In many parts of Australia, the local pub is where friends gather to share their lives. In the early evening grandparents, toddlers, babies and teenagers, farmers, artists and athletes mesh as one community. The conversation spills out onto the lawn, children play and farmers show off stalks of wheat from their crops. It is a delightful and engaging time.
I experienced a great sense of belonging in this mob of neighbours and gave a lot of thought to the importance of simply getting together. The value of the town square, a park, a church or community hall, a pub or eatery that is open to all. In our world we often fail to stop for this visit and as architects have forgotten the importance of structure and design in communities so they have a center. History tells us that tribes had always gathered around the “water hole” and, lucky for us, many still do.