Walk down any street in your neighbourhood. How do you feel as you walk along? Do you feel welcome or is it a closed shop?
Structure influences behaviour. Just like the many ways to physically structure your office for collaboration, how we structure our personal property influences our relationship with our neighbours. We can structure our properties to encourage connections between neighbours, and just plain make others feel that they are welcome here, and came to the right place (homage to Peter Block).
Neighbourhoods are like living systems, and the more the parts of that system connect with each other, the healthier the system/neighbourhood will be.
And so, with my camera in hand, I went on a walk-about in my own South Jubilee neighbourhood; comprised of single family homes, low-rise apartments, a mix of retailers, a small public school, and a small arts college. It’s a relatively safe place, not to many gated properties here. Still, I wanted to capture a few of the ways my neighbors (be they home owners, retailers, schools, or public property) have structured their properties, and that make me feel especially welcome!
All of the following pictures I took as I walked along the sidewalk. I selected these because each one spoke to me in a friendly, inviting, neighbourly kind of way, and show how structure can foster connection.
What other ways do you and/or your neighborrs structure for connection?