Grid Areas

May 20, 2023

Grid areas are a key component of CSS Grid, a powerful layout module that allows web developers to create complex, multi-dimensional layouts with ease. A grid area is a rectangular area within a grid container that can hold one or more grid items, which are the individual elements that make up the layout. Grid areas are defined by assigning a name to each area, which can then be used to place and position grid items within the grid container.


The purpose of grid areas is to provide a flexible and powerful way to create complex layouts for web pages. With the rise of responsive design and the need for layouts that work across different devices and screen sizes, CSS Grid has become an essential tool for web developers. Grid areas allow developers to define specific regions within the grid container, which can be used to position and place grid items in a precise and controlled way.

Using grid areas, web developers can create layouts that incorporate multiple rows and columns, with different areas of the grid container having different sizes and proportions. This allows for a great deal of flexibility in how content is laid out on a web page, and can help to make pages more visually appealing and easy to navigate.


To define grid areas in CSS Grid, the grid-template-areas property is used. This property allows developers to create a visual representation of the grid container, using a series of ASCII characters to define the different areas of the grid.

For example, consider the following HTML and CSS code:

<div class="container">
  <div class="item item1">Item 1</div>
  <div class="item item2">Item 2</div>
  <div class="item item3">Item 3</div>
  <div class="item item4">Item 4</div>

.container {
  display: grid;
  grid-template-columns: repeat(3, 1fr);
  grid-template-rows: repeat(2, 1fr);
    "header header header"
    "main main sidebar";

.item1 {
  grid-area: header;

.item2 {
  grid-area: main;

.item3 {
  grid-area: sidebar;

.item4 {
  grid-area: main;

In this example, we have a grid container with two rows and three columns, with specific areas defined by the grid-template-areas property. The layout is arranged so that the header area spans all three columns of the first row, while the main area spans the first two columns of the second row. The sidebar area spans the third column of the second row.

Each of the grid items is then positioned within the grid container using the grid-area property, which specifies the name of the grid area that the item should be placed in.

Grid areas can also be used to create more complex layouts, such as those with overlapping elements or irregular shapes. By using the grid-template-areas property to define different areas of the grid container, developers can create sophisticated layouts that are both visually appealing and highly functional.

Key Characteristics

There are several key characteristics of grid areas that make them a powerful tool for web developers:

  • Flexibility: Grid areas allow for a great deal of flexibility in how content is laid out on a web page. By defining different areas of the grid container, developers can create layouts that are customized to the needs of a particular site or application.

  • Precision: Grid areas provide a precise and controlled way to position and place grid items within a layout. This can help to ensure that content is displayed in a visually appealing and easy-to-navigate way.

  • Ease of use: CSS Grid is designed to be easy to use, and grid areas are no exception. With a few simple lines of code, developers can create complex layouts that would be difficult or impossible to achieve with other layout modules.

  • Compatibility: CSS Grid is widely supported by modern web browsers, making it an ideal choice for web developers who want to create sophisticated layouts that work across different devices and platforms.