EDAW beat off Manchester-based rival Building Design Partnership and Cheshire practice Taylor Young to the scheme, which is expected to take up to 12 months to complete.
The north Manchester project covers eight neighbourhoods and 90,000 residents. This is more than twice the area covered by the nearby east Manchester regeneration scheme, which is looking to double the number of residents to 60,000 and build up to 12,500 homes.
Sources close to the north Manchester scheme said it would be largely residential in focus, although the size of the area meant that other uses would inevitably be covered as well.
The masterplan has been described as a strategic regeneration framework, and EDAW's work will be monitored by a panel made up of members of the council and quango North Manchester Regeneration.
The neighbourhoods covered under the plan are Collyhurst, Cheetham, Harpurhey, Lightbowne, Crumpsall, Blackley, Charlestown and Moston.
Regeneration body New East Manchester is also pushing forward its redevelopment plans. It has appointed Manchester-based architect Mills Beaumont Leavey Channon and consultant Optima to produce a neighbourhood plan for the Higher Openshaw area.
It is hoped that the plan will secure funds from the proposed £8bn Housing Renewal Fund for the demolition or improvement of up to 800 terraced houses. Much of the area's pre-1919 housing lies derelict.
MBLC director George Mills said: "There are a significant number of voids in the terraced housing, but the tenants and the owner-occupiers have expressed a preference not to demolish them all – we're looking to keep about 50% of the stock." Mills added that he expected the study to be completed by mid-summer.
Optima is also helping with a smaller scheme in east Manchester's Eccleshall Street area involving the refurbishment or demolition of up to 300 homes.
New East Manchester has appointed housebuilders Gleeson Homes and Lovell to develop a neighbourhood plan for the construction of 450 homes in Beswick. Work is expected to start by the end of the year.