Third Spaces Defined

What’s a Third Space?

The concept of “third spaces” was used often in the visioning process for downtown. A third space, as defined by consultant Rebecca Ryan in her book, Live First, Work Second, is “not home (the ‘first space’) or work (the ‘second space’). A third space is an in-between space. It may be a coffee house, a martini bar, or a bistro. Third Spaces are generally busy and locally owned.”

Third spaces bring together people from all walks of life to hang out and connect in a public place.

“A Third Space is your local ‘it’ place where ideas — and often caffeine — collide. Birthplace of the start-up. Ground zero for the mind-blowing creative alliance. A place where pink hair and gray hair are equally welcome,” Ryan writes. “If taverns were the meeting places of Thomas Jefferson and front porches the meeting places of the Cleavers, Third Spaces are the places for talent in the Knowledge Economy.”