Understandings of community in urban–rural fringe locations in Ireland are explored in thispaper. As a specific space at the interface between theurban and the rural the fringe incorporates processesof rapid physical, social, and demographic change.These give rise to a range of complex and oftencompeting dynamics, that impact on people and placein a variety of ways. Among the main preoccupationsand concerns in these rapidly evolving fringe locationsare those relating to what can broadly bedescribed as ‘quality of life’. How this concept isunderstood across different groups situated within thespatial setting of the fringe, and how it influences thedevelopment of a sustainable community there, arecentral to this discussion. Drawing on householdinterviews from four case-study locations surroundingGalway City, Ireland, this paper examines howquality of life is experienced across a range of socialand spatial dimensions that relate to these locations,and the extent to which they provide a common set ofinterests around which community may be built.From a wider knowledge perspective, it contributes todebates about how the concept of communityprovides explanatory power regarding the way inwhich individuals are associated with one another onthe basis of a set of shared interests or concernswithin a particular spatial setting.