Coffee shops have been described as ‘third places’ in urban lives separate from the work and home, providing places for people to meet, relax and develop connections. However, the growing presence of coffee shops in the urban landscape has meant that they increasingly take on a wider range of roles, becoming spaces of both leisure and work but also providing spaces of sociality in which people can develop connections, and potentially communities. The roles of coffee shops in five cities in England are explored in order to consider how they can be understood not only as spaces of consumption, but spaces which facilitate connection in increasingly isolated urban lives, and generate the potential for communities to develop. By understanding the varied ways in which businesses and consumers co-create these spaces, it may be possible to increase their potential as ‘spaces of community’.
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- Coffee shops
- High street
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science