Principle 2: Community focused

Public space brings people together and builds strong, connected and resilient communities.

Public spaces are where we socialise with friends and loved ones and enjoy social connections.

We might find ourselves side-by-side with people we don’t know or sharing space and experiences with people who are different from us. This can help to create community relationships and networks of support that are useful when communities experience to broader economic and social shifts.

Public space allows people from different cultures, ages or religious groups to connect and interact, just as it can between families and friends. Public spaces should allow free expression, collective action, public debate and opportunities for people of all backgrounds to feel they’re part of their community.

Public space needs to be suitable for its community’s specific needs and expectations. Involve the community – including people not usually represented, or not easy to reach – in the decisions about the future of public space. This will build trust and may ultimately create a sense of belonging and attachment.

This is an edited version of the charter. For the full text, please download: NSW Public Spaces Charter (PDF, 3.34 MB).