D Brandon photo

In Hartford and Springfield, the recent closure of three neighborhood coffee shops has brought into sharp relief the notion that people in cities need a “third place”—somewhere that isn’t work or home, but where one can go and relax and see other human beings, and have some meaningful purpose.

In Hartford, the treasured La Paloma Sabanera closed its doors just prior to the new year; in Springfield, it was two Forest Park establishments: Blue Moon Coffee Roasters at about the same time, and earlier last fall, the short-lived but dashing 3hree Cafe.

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