The virtual community in a given area is the pattern of natural co-presence brought about through the influence of spatial design on movement and other related aspects of space use. Spatial configuration influences patterns of movement in space, and movement is by far the dominant form of space use. Through its effects on movement, spatial configuration tends naturally to define certain patterns of co-presence and therefore co-awareness amongst the individuals living in and passing through an area. These are referred to as the virtual community.
Hillier, B. (1996, 2007), Space is the Machine: A Configurational Theory of Architecture. Space Syntax: London, UK. p141