Using zend-view

zend-view provides a native PHP template system via its PhpRenderer, and is maintained by Zend Framework. It provides:

  • Layout facilities.
  • Helpers for escaping, and the ability to provide custom helper extensions.

We provide a TemplateRendererInterface wrapper for zend-view's PhpRenderer via Zend\Expressive\ZendView\ZendViewRenderer.

Installing zend-view

To use the zend-view wrapper, you must first install the zend-view integration:

$ composer require zendframework/zend-expressive-zendviewrenderer

Using the wrapper

If instantiated without arguments, Zend\Expressive\ZendView\ZendViewRenderer will create an instance of the PhpRenderer, which it will then proxy to.

use Zend\Expressive\ZendView\ZendViewRenderer;

$renderer = new ZendViewRenderer();

Alternately, you can instantiate and configure the engine yourself, and pass it to the Zend\Expressive\ZendView\ZendViewRenderer constructor:

use Zend\Expressive\ZendView\ZendViewRenderer;
use Zend\View\Renderer\PhpRenderer;
use Zend\View\Resolver;

// Create the engine instance:
$renderer = new PhpRenderer();

// Configure it:
$resolver = new Resolver\AggregateResolver();
    new Resolver\TemplateMapResolver(include 'config/templates.php'),
    (new Resolver\TemplatePathStack())
    ->setPaths(include 'config/template_paths.php')

// Inject:
$renderer = new ZendViewRenderer($renderer);

Namespaced path resolving

Expressive defines a custom zend-view resolver, Zend\Expressive\ZendView\NamespacedPathStackResolver. This resolver provides the ability to segregate paths by namespace, and later resolve a template according to the namespace, using the namespace::template notation required of TemplateRendererInterface implementations.

The ZendView adapter ensures that:

  • An AggregateResolver is registered with the renderer. If the registered resolver is not an AggregateResolver, it creates one and adds the original resolver to it.
  • A NamespacedPathStackResolver is registered with the AggregateResolver, at a low priority (0), ensuring attempts to resolve hit it later.

With resolvers such as the TemplateMapResolver, you can also resolve namespaced templates, mapping them directly to the template on the filesystem that matches; adding such a resolver can be a nice performance boost!


Unlike the other supported template engines, zend-view does not support layouts out-of-the-box. Expressive abstracts this fact away, providing two facilities for doing so:

  • You may pass a layout template name or Zend\View\Model\ModelInterface instance representing the layout as the second argument to the constructor.
  • You may pass a "layout" parameter during rendering, with a value of either a layout template name or a Zend\View\Model\ModelInterface instance representing the layout. Passing a layout this way will override any layout provided to the constructor.

In each case, the zend-view implementation will do a depth-first, recursive render in order to provide content within the selected layout.

  • Since 1.3: You may also pass a boolean false value to either addDefaultParam() or via the template variables for the layout key; doing so will disable the layout.

Layout name passed to constructor

use Zend\Expressive\ZendView\ZendViewRenderer;

// Create the engine instance with a layout name:
$renderer = new ZendViewRenderer(null, 'layout::layout');

Layout view model passed to constructor

use Zend\Expressive\ZendView\ZendViewRenderer;
use Zend\View\Model\ViewModel;

// Create the layout view model:
$layout = new ViewModel([
    'encoding' => 'utf-8',
    'cssPath'  => '/css/prod/',

// Create the engine instance with the layout:
$renderer = new ZendViewRenderer(null, $layout);

Provide a layout name when rendering

$content = $renderer->render('blog/entry', [
    'layout' => 'layout::blog',
    'entry'  => $entry,

Provide a layout view model when rendering

use Zend\View\Model\ViewModel;

// Create the layout view model:
$layout = new ViewModel([
    'encoding' => 'utf-8',
    'cssPath'  => '/css/blog/',

$content = $renderer->render('blog/entry', [
    'layout' => $layout,
    'entry'  => $entry,


Expressive provides overrides of specific view helpers in order to better integrate with PSR-7. These include:

  • Zend\Expressive\ZendView\UrlHelper. This helper consumes the application's Zend\Expressive\Router\RouterInterface instance in order to generate URIs. Its signature is: url($routeName, array $routeParams = [], array $queryParams = [], $fragmentIdentifier = null, array $options = [])
  • Zend\Expressive\ZendView\ServerUrlHelper. This helper consumes the URI from the application's request in order to provide fully qualified URIs. Its signature is: serverUrl($path = null).

To use this particular helper, you will need to inject it with the request URI somewhere within your application:


We recommend doing this within a pre-pipeline middleware.


We recommend the following practices when using the zend-view adapter:

  • If using a layout, create a factory to return the layout view model as a service; this allows you to inject it into middleware and add variables to it.
  • While we support passing the layout as a rendering parameter, be aware that if you change engines, this may not be supported.

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