Accessibility links

Top Navigation

Urban Design Compendium

Detailing the Place

Detail involves the design of the building and the public realm and the interface between them. This includes:

  • Building elements: elevations, corner treatments, roof lines, doors and windows, materials
  • Public realm elements: planting, street furniture, lighting and public art
  • Interfaces: steps, fences, front gardens, hedges, walls, windows and doors

Detail is important because it completes the identity and quality of the place. 

The quality of detailing:

  • Can make or break a place
  • Stimulates commitment to maintenance
  • Allows all the users of a place to enjoy it, in a balanced and efficient way
  • Creates and retains values
  • Ensure distinctiveness at a range of scales


To download this section, or the entire UDC1 in PDF form, please go to PDF Downloads - UDC1

See case studies for 'Detailing the Place'