Building on Success: Trafford

In the South West of Greater Manchester, Trafford has a history of world-famous sporting grounds, listed buildings and stunning green spaces; making it a highly desirable place to live. The borough’s towns span from urban areas close to Manchester City Centre and Salford towards Cheshire, and each has a unique character and closely knit communities.

Trafford is also famously home to the world’s first industrial park, which since 1896, has been the borough’s engine for growth and is now a prime location for manufacturing, distribution and largescale industry and is home to internationally renowned names. Its proximity to Manchester Airport and the Manchester Ship Canal has long provided growth opportunities, which are now supported by the motorway network and public transport connections.

Supporting Growth in Trafford

Now, Trafford is working to support growth in the borough by increasing employment opportunities, enhancing its town centres and creating a greener future. With a focus on financial and business services, logistics, advanced engineering, cultural, creative, digital and media industries as well as investing heavily in net zero and energy innovation, Trafford hopes to diversify its economy.

By investing in its town centres, green spaces and public realm, Trafford hopes to increase its desirability as a leading destination to live, so that it can attract talent and a diverse population. Town Centres will be a key location for the economic growth of Trafford, as they adapt to changing consumer needs and ways of life.

Here are some of the transformative developments in Trafford that will help the borough build on its success and create a greener, fairer and more prosperous future:

New Carrington

New Carrington is one of Greater Manchester’s strategic growth locations identified in its long-term vision Places for Everyone (PfE). Located in West Trafford, south of the River Mersey and close to the town of Sale and the National Trust’s Dunham Massey Estate. The New Carrington Masterplan provides a significant opportunity to provide housing and employment opportunities in already popular and characterful areas, integrating new neighbourhoods with existing communities.

The proposed development will create up to 5,000 homes and 350,000 sqm of employment floor space for industry and warehousing. The Council has also identified significant areas of greenspace throughout the centre of the site alongside other green spaces to preserve nature and biodiversity. As a new neighbourhood, New Carrington will also see investment in public transport links, active travel and community services which will also benefit existing communities.

Davenport Green

Davenport Green will provide up to 2,500 new homes and 60,000 sqm of new business space in one of the best connected locations in Greater Manchester. Extending over 100 Ha the Davenport Green Site is a major new development opportunity located adjacent to Manchester Airport, the M56 Motorway and proposed High Speed NPR station.

With Council’s across Greater Manchester now adopting the joint “Places for Everyone” Plan the Davenport Green site will benefit from a formal allocation within a statutory development plan – providing certainty for future planning and investment. Backed by leading Institution Royal London Asset Management, detailed master planning is now underway to ensure development and infrastructure comes forward in a coordinated and timely manner.

Alongside new homes and business space the development area will also feature a local centre and new rural park. Construction here will also compliment the expansion of the Wythenshawe Hospital site and related campus, located just to the North. With the approved alignment of a Metrolink line running through the heart of the site, Davenport Green has potential to capitalise on its proximity to the city region, airport and wider North West and become the centre of accessible growth in the south of Greater Manchester.


Trafford Council is committed to a huge regeneration project covering areas around the Manchester Ship Canal and Manchester United.

The Council’s draft Trafford Wharfside masterplan offers a vision for the Trafford Wharfside area as a key emerging neighbourhood over the next 15 years.

The plan has identified a number of potential development sites and will be used to set an overall strategy to guide future, well designed development in the area. The masterplan places nature and landscape at the heart of its vision, celebrates the Manchester Ship Canal waterfront and the Imperial War Museum, creates opportunities for up to 5,000 high quality new homes, connects Trafford Wharfside to the city centre and develops a high-quality setting for Manchester United as they develop their plans for a world-class football stadium.

The vision for Trafford Wharfside is for an area of well-connected communities where all amenities, landmarks and public spaces are easily accessed. The vision supports the Council’s priorities to reduce health inequalities, supporting people out of poverty and addressing our climate crisis and will create a greener, more natural place in which to live and visit.

Civic Quarter AAP

Trafford Council and the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) have selected a development partner for the former police headquarters site on Chester Road in Stretford.

The Council and GMCA have chosen developers FEC to work with them on plans to build over 700 much-needed new homes – including affordable housing – on the 3.57Ha site.

Trafford, which has signed a joint venture (JV) agreement with the landowners, GMCA, selected the developers following a thorough and competitive procurement process which started in 2022.

The scheme forms part of Trafford Council’s Civic Quarter Area Action Plan for Old Trafford. In addition to new housing, the site aims to provide a hotel, leisure uses, new shops, offices and community facilities, all in a sustainable location with excellent public transport links.

The project aims to provide 25 per cent affordable housing on the former Chester House site, in line with the Council and the GMCA’s joint commitment to deliver more good-quality affordable homes, including through the regeneration of brownfield land. The scheme is also part of the Council’s commitment to become carbon neutral by 2038.

The site was formerly the HQ of Greater Manchester Police before the force moved to a purpose-built facility in Central Park, Newton Heath, in 2012.

A new University Academy 92 (US92) campus quarter provides undergraduate, postgraduate, CPD and pathway degrees in sports, media and business to over 6,500 students at the former Kellogg’s headquarters in Old Trafford. The Campus Quarter will also see new sports facilities, a leisure centre, a hotel, commercial spaces and high-quality student accommodation come to Stretford to support the university.

Trafford Park Decarbonisation

As part of Trafford’s vision for the future, it is working towards becoming more environmentally friendly. Trafford Council is a frontrunner in the UK for climate action and like the rest of Greater Manchester is dedicated to becoming net zero by 2038. A huge part of this will result in the decarbonisation of Trafford Park, the borough’s commercial and industrial hub and, the world’s first and still Europe’s largest industrial estate.

The Council is working with local partners to develop a decarbonisation roadmap for the industrial park including energy conservation measures, alternative energy generation technologies and carbon offsetting.

A report produced by Siemens has set out the scale of the challenge, and now the borough is working to put their roadmap into action; reducing emissions across the park and supporting businesses on their journey to net zero.

Trafford Low Carbon Energy Park

Trafford Low Carbon Energy Park

Trafford is at the centre of Greater Manchester’s decarbonisation plans and is currently developing Trafford Low Carbon Energy Park, which will deliver green hydrogen to the region. The development consists of multiple renewable and low-carbon projects, to accelerate the North West’s route to net zero. The park includes a green hydrogen production facility, a lithium battery energy storage scheme and a liquid air storage plant in partnership with Highview (which will be the largest in Europe).

Delivered by Carlton Power, Trafford Green Hydrogen is an industry-leading project, that will use renewable energy to produce green hydrogen fuel for industry, transport and heating. The development will have an ultimate capacity of 200MW, which will be sufficient to take around 8,000 petrol cars off the road annually. The initial phase will be 20MW.

Stretford Town Centre

Stretford has been identified by Trafford Council as a centre of regeneration, with a bold vision for transformational change in the town centre over the next decade. The regeneration of Stretford will create a sustainable town centre, revitalise the high street and put community back into the town.

Trafford Council are developing a masterplan covering more than 27 acres and five neighbourhoods within Stretford; working to create more green spaces and public realm. It’s proposed areas for development along the canalside and hopes to improve pedestrian links and links to the Metrolink in line with public opinion.

Stretford Mall, a shopping centre in the heart of the town, is being redeveloped in partnership with Bruntwood. The proposals aim to deliver a vibrant, economically sustainable town centre for Stretford including shops, employment, leisure and new homes.

The plans include restaurants and bars to support the local evening economy; re-establishing King Street as a lively new high street, supporting existing businesses and independent brands; new public open spaces and green areas equivalent to 1.5 football pitches; the creation of a new waterside neighbourhood and new residential quarter, St Matthews delivering up to 800 new homes.

Altrincham Town Centre

As Trafford’s largest town centre, Altrincham has a historic market, specialist independent businesses, high street names and a vibrant mix of restaurants. It has a thriving commercial sector and high daytime footfall, with a growing residential population.

Trafford Council has invested a further £3m in Altrincham’s public realm to create more seating areas, nature-based solutions and green infrastructure, reduce the number of vehicles and improve cycling safety with segregated cycle lanes.

There are also plans for several residential developments across Altrincham, with developers and residents attracted by the continuing desirability to live there.

Sale Town Centre

Sale is a busy commuter suburb within Trafford, which was recently listed as the fourth most desirable place to live in the UK. It already benefits from being close to the Airport, motorway and great transport links to the city centre. Plus, it’s home to over 200 retailers and independent businesses as well as a theatre, flexible arts and event space.

Now, Trafford Council is working with the owners of Stanley Square Shopping Centre in Sale as they develop the centre attracting a range of new occupiers. This comes as the role of our region’s towns is changing; there’s a rise in demand for town centre living and mixed-use leisure spaces to create a more diverse offering.

Work is also underway to transform the former Sale Magistrates Court into 84 new homes, including 21 affordable properties, in the centre of the town.

Urmston Town Centre

A mere 10 minute train ride from the Centre of Manchester and a few minutes from the M60, Urmston has latent potential to expand as a satellite centre within the City region. With its great schools, good housing and thriving centre, the town is already a popular choice for residents – but a New Masterplan for the town will identify fresh opportunities for growth – across business, commercial and housing sectors.

To learn more about growth opportunities in Trafford, visit the Manchester Stand at MIPIM 2024 for networking opportunities and stand sessions.