What we do

The complete development process

1. Site identification and acquisition


Alternative Developments identifies and acquires real estate assets where it can create major capital uplift through the planning, development and leasing process. Our investment decisions are based on detailed research and expert market knowledge that enables us to target emerging new areas that are set to benefit from infrastructure led regeneration. We were an early investor in the New Eastern City fringe areas of Aldgate, Whitechapel and Bethnal Green, which are now established as the Tech City Hub. We continue to acquire development sites in these areas to capitalise on the expected growth related to Crossrail.


2. Scheme Formulation


Alternative Developments has expert knowledge on how to formulate the optimum mix of uses to maximize a site’s development potential within the planning framework. We use detailed cash flow appraisals to analyse a site’s development potential to deliver the best schemes in the right location.

3. Planning Permission

Alternative Developments adds value to our sites by securing the best possible planning permission. We have a long track record of delivering student residential, mixed use and office schemes through the complex London planning process. We collaborate with leading architects, designers and local stakeholders to produce high quality, sustainable buildings that add to their neighbourhood and promote regeneration. Recent schemes include,


  • Assam Place, 35 Commercial Road, Aldgate, E1 – This was a redundant historic brewery and car park. We developed an 18 floor student residential building with 350 studio apartments and 40,000 sq ft university teaching accommodation, reutilising the brewery building.
  • 120 Fenchurch Street, City, EC3 – We acquired nine separate buildings to form a one acre island site in the centre of the City of London.   We secured planning consent for a 450,000 sq ft new office scheme that is now let to M&G and is under construction.
  • 20 Whitechapel Road, Whitechapel, E1 – This was a textile warehouse and car park.   We have secured planning consent for a new 22,500 sq ft office scheme that will be completed in 2017
  • 254 Cambridge Heath Road, Bethnal Green, E2 – Planning secured to transform a redundant 25,000 sq ft building into 45,000 sq ft of new offices.
  • 14 Fieldgate Street, Whitechapel, E1 – We acquired a warehouse and car park site and secured planning to develop 340 new student rooms above a new 12,000 sq ft Tesco. The scheme was completed in 2012.
4. Development Management

We have an expert and practical skill set to lead complex developments through the construction phase. We assemble and manage teams of project specific expert consultants and report to our investment partners. Our schemes are delivered on time and on budget.

5. Marketing, Leasing and Sales

Alternative Developments has 25 years experience in formulating and undertaking creative marketing and leasing strategies. We have always secured premium rents for our completed schemes.

An example of our marketing is Assam Place, E1. Alternative Developments formulated the marketing strategy to lease the 347 student studios on an annual recurring basis. This included a technically advanced online marketing and reservations platform, on site personnel and high quality multi media marketing materials. In a 12 week period, we achieved 100% occupancy, producing an annual rental income of £5.5 million.

6. Management and Operation of Serviced Offices

We have a successful track record in owning, setting up and operating serviced and flexible office centres in London, including a 450 + desk serviced office centre at 120 Fenchurch Street and 10 Fenchurch Avenue, EC3.

7. European Student Housing

Alternative Developments has researched the student residential markets in major European university cities and identified outstanding investment opportunities. We are using our development expertise and operational skills to create a platform of 2,000 bed spaces over the next 5 years. We have secured our first sites in Oslo and Stockholm, with others following in Germany and Italy. We are working with investment partners and banks to source additional development funding.