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Friendship IRL

Alex Alexander



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Take Action: Reviving Third Places and Walkable Communities

• 75 min

In North America, there are laws in place that make it more difficult to connect. Zoning and parking laws impact the amount of foot traffic in a town, which consequently affects the number and kinds of third places in a town. People often talk about how these laws impact things like home values or crime – but rarely do they touch on their social implications. Joining me today is Nathan Allebach, a creative director, marketer, and lover of walkable communities. He has a wealth of knowledge on this topic, and of third places; at the end of this interview, I felt like I’d taken a college course on third places and walkable communities – even though I’d already read up on quite a lot of this. Want to see more third places? Listening to this podcast is a step. Build awareness for yourself. Follow the organizations Nathan mentions. Talk to local businesses about it. Big changes start with awareness, followed by small changes. In this episode you’ll hear about: How so many people are having to choose between their financial goals and social wellness – and how third places can be a solution for thatOur own “third places” growing up – Walmart, Target, the mall, a car – and what millennials have done to try to create their own third placesMixed-use zoning, which means shops existed where people lived, and the affect Post World War II America had on thisBuilding regulations that impact third places: single family zoning, setback requirements, minimum lot size/square footage requirements; parking requirementsThe roles of race and class in third places, and the impact cars have had on them in history and todayGuerilla activism, and small things you can do to make an impact: plant street trees; advocate for public art, new benches, zoning and parking reforms; pay attentionResources & Links Be sure to follow Nathan Allebach on Instagram and TikTok! Like what you hear? Visit my website, leave me a voicemail, and follow me on Instagram!  Want to take this conversation a step further? Send this episode to a friend. Tell them you found it interesting and use what we just talked about as a conversation starter the next time you and your friend hang out!

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