Trinity College expansion gets green light

LDA Design has helped Trinity College in Oxford secure planning for a multi-million pound renovation, the College’s first major revamp of its historic Broad Street site in fifty years.

Oxford City Council unanimously approved the plans, developed by LDA Design and Adam Architecture. The site, which sits in Oxford’s Central Conservation Area, includes Grade I, II and II* listed buildings. The College’s park is also Grade II listed.

Extensive stakeholder consultation has informed the design, which the Council described as high quality and “appropriate to its context in terms of appearance, height and scale.” The new plans draw on a rich understanding of the historic significance of the site. The proposed building, although recognisably contemporary, is designed to sit comfortably alongside the College’s distinctive classical architecture. Carefully proportioned elevations feature high-quality detailing, reflecting design details found throughout Trinity.

A more transparent ground floor establishes seamless connections between inside and out, allowing light to flood in. The Library Quad will be transformed into an attractive courtyard that responds to both the new building uses and the existing Library. A new terrace enables the café to spill out; a new water feature will add interest and delight.

LDA Design Director and project lead, Dafydd Warburton, explains the vision for the landscape design: “We wanted to create a series of connected outdoor ‘rooms’, offering students a variety of environments to enjoy for a range of activities from dining to lounging, with grassy lawns providing space for casual gatherings. A woodland garden establishes inviting informality; movable seating provides the flexibility the College requires to cater for all occasions.

“These design moves will significantly improve Trinty’s offer to its students, helping to promote an atmosphere of collaboration and exchange.”

The expansion will provide the College with a new lecture theatre, extended library facilities, teaching rooms, and 46 study bedrooms, which will enable the College to offer on-site accommodation to its graduate students in their first year. Trinity said: “The new development will transform what we are able to offer to our whole academic community.”

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Damian Holmes is the Founder and Editor of World Landscape Architecture (WLA). He is a registered landscape architect (AILA) working in international design practice in Australia. Damian founded WLA in 2007 to provide a website for landscape architects written by landscape architects. Connect on Linkedin at