Trafford Design Code

Landscape led layouts

Visual structure

Residential sites

Visual structure


The identity and structure of traditional streets in Trafford is very recognisable. Within the Borough this is typically terraced or semi-detached housing along defined building lines with local materials and repetition of architectural features, often bay windows and gable ends.


Infill projects will be expected to reference these traditional features in a modern form. Larger housing developments may require a greater variation in the size and design of houses but should still follow some of the basic traditional rules of visual identity set out in this Chapter.

Features of residential visual structure

  1. Interesting views within the area
  2. Maximisation of views out of area to landmarks
  3. Coherant street with identifiable structure
  4. A mix of diversity between streets
  5. A complimentary pallette of materials
  6. Spaces enclosed by buildings


Coherent rhythm and structure of streets

Examples from surrounding areas in Trafford

Contextual examples of coherent rhythm and structure 

Trafford’s traditional streets display all the qualities of good visual structure. Throughout the Borough, streets use repeating roof forms, symmetry, materials, composition, window spacing, detailing and more to create a coherent rhythm. 

The Trafford twin with forward gable ends and bay windows is a common way of creating a coherant street structure

Despite different colours and materials this street is unified through the bold repitition of gable roof and bay windows

Terraced streets in Trafford create unity through strong buildings lines, repeated architectural features and complimentary materials

This street is unified by the materials, its elevation composition, repeating chimneys and the projecting windows and roof detail

Examples of achieving rhythm and coherence

Creating coherence through elevation composition

The diagram shows how even on streets where there is a large degree of variation of colours, materials and heights, the composition of the elevation provides coherence by repeating the spacing and proportions of window openings.

Built examples

Principles of coherent rhythm and structure

Repition of architectural features

Street composition and spacing

Facade proportion and composition

Rhythm of roof types and features

Window proportion and spacing

Material palette and details

Gable roof orientation and projection



Principles of achieving residential variation

Variation can be achieved in a variety of ways. The same level of diversity between housing types can be achieved across a site, whilst also ensuring unified visual structure to streets. Where diversity within a street is required by the context, there must still be a visual identity that creates structure to the street (see Code RSVS 1).  

Diversity between blocks

Diversity can be achieved between blocks so that there is variance of building types on either sides of streets. This can be advantage for efficient blocks but there will need to be an identifiable structure to bring order to the street 

Diversity between streets

Diversity can happen between different streets if blocks can accommodate a variance of building types. This will allow for a greater range of house types, sizes and tenures. This can also help to create more efficient blocks, more unified street structures and assist with wayfinding

Diversity within streets

 The amount of diversity within a street will depend on the context. Diversity within streets in urban areas is only acceptable where there is a coherant structure defined by elements in the following section, such as repeating architectural features, building spacing, proportions and scale.

Principles of achieving residential variation

Formal street structure

Formal streets, typical of urban settings,and use roofs, building form, architectural repetition, materials and layout to create a formal understandable structure

Varied but structured streets

Streets with more variation can work well in more suburban or rural settings but should still use rules of visual structure to bring order and coherence for residents and visitors


Define and enclose spaces with buildings

Principles of space definition layout types



Linear park




Principles of context led space enclosure

High rise, high density neighbourhoods or town centres; A ratio of 1:1 building height to street width

High density suburbs and town centres context; A ratio of 1:2 building height to street width

Low density new places and medium density suburb context; A ratio of 1:3 building height to street width

Low density residential context; A ratio of 1:4 building height to street width

Examples of residential site building enclosure


Views, vistas and landmarks


Creating interesting townscape through views

There are a variety of ways to achieve views in residential projects. Here are some examples of layouts that create or enhance existing views.

Principles of views, vistas and landmarks

Terminated views

Corner plots


Framed views

Deflected views


Example of master plan views

Examples of residential views, vistas and landmarks

Visual identity and structure case studies

The Depot, Manchester

The Depot, Whalley Range, Manchester by Buttress Architects for Rise Homes Map Street View Map Street View For 100 years, the corner of Bowes Street

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Cobham Manor, London

Chobham Manor, Stratford, London PRP, Make, muf architecture/art for LLDC (Taylor Wimpey and L&Q) Map Street View Map Street View Part of the London Legacy

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Nunhead Green

Nunhead Green by AOC and Derek Millar Architects Nunhead Green transforms a brownfield site, redefining existing connections between the village green and surrounding neighbourhood. The

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Brentwood Locks

brentwood Lock West, London by Duggan Morris Mixed tenure housing along the waterfront, forming part of a five-year project to breathe new life into the

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Annesley Gardens

Annesley Gardens, Dublin by Metropolitan Workshop for Metropolitan Workshop’s project at Annesley Gardens, in the 19th Century suburb of Ranelagh, has transformed a highly constrained

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The Acres, Timperley

The Acres, Timperley by Trinity Architects (now B2 Architecture Ltd) for LandmarkA building or structure that stands out from its background by virtue of its

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Abode, Cambridge

Abode, Cambridge by Proctor and Matthews / BBUK Studio Limited for Countryside Properties Timber cladding, gable ends, a pedestrian focused public realm and generous planting

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Permeable paving options