Every Friday night, residents of the new urbanist community Bradburn Village in Westminster, Colorado gather for their weekly park party. Adults socialize over beer and wine while the kids play together. Bradburn is designed to encourage social interaction among neighbors, and judging by the packed park parties and the incredible number of social events here, it works.Link
Every home in Bradburn includes a large front porch--not just a token 2 foot concrete stoop. Garages are all in the back, and homes here also have very small setbacks (the distance between the house and the sidewalk, or front yard), meaning the porches sit right above the sidewalks. This means people sitting on their front porches easily see neighbors walking by, and they stop to talk, creating a community bond that is so elusive in most traditional suburban neighborhoods.
Mark Frauenfelder is the founder of Boing Boing and the editor-in-chief of MAKE and Cool Tools. Twitter: @frauenfelder. His new book is Maker Dad: Lunch Box Guitars, Antigravity Jars, and 22 Other Incredibly Cool Father-Daughter DIY Projects