Manchester skyline

A trusted development partner

We buy the best sites in the best locations to deliver strong rental growth.

An unrivalled track record

We have an excellent track record at delivering ambitious transformational regeneration projects that create the best places to live, with an emphasis on quality, community and sustainability.

Manchester skyline
Merrion Way

At a glance


delivered PBSA beds

>99% occupancy YOY

across managed assets


beds under management

>£2.09 billion

GDV completed beds

>£1.5 billion

development pipeline


beds in pipeline


The Kingfisher external building view

Exeter, UK

Retail, Student accommodation

199 beds

£30 million


Downing opened The Kingfisher in 2016, a high-quality student accommodation scheme in the heart of Exeter, which provides 203 student beds. The £30m mixed-use scheme features a range of superior studio apartments with associated retail amenities.

Cityside Leeds student accommodation

Leeds, UK

Student accommodation

474 beds


Downing continues to remain at the forefront of development in Leeds with Phase 3 of the Central Village student accommodation scheme.

Verde Downing students building, external

Newcastle, UK

Student accommodation

543 beds


The fourth & final phase of the £250 million Downing Plaza development, the largest planning application to be granted in Newcastle for a generation, is on the former Hill Court site adjacent to The University of Newcastle Business School which was built by Downing in 2011.

West Village Glasgow riverside view

Glasgow, UK

Student accommodation

701 beds



Downing’s initial £65m West Village scheme has revitalised the site of a former railway station to create a luxury student accommodation development in one of the UK’s premier university cities.

Central Village development, external

Leeds, UK

Student accommodation

1,455 beds


Building on the success of its renowned Broadcasting Place development, Downing’s Central Village scheme has seen it deliver 981 student bedrooms over phases 1 & 2 with another 474 bedrooms in phase 3.

Plaza development, Newcastle buildings

Newcastle, UK

Student accommodation

1,843 beds


On the site of the former Newcastle and Brown Brewery, the Downing Plaza development in Newcastle is the largest planning application to be granted in Newcastle for a generation.

The Railyard, Cambridge - external

Cambridge, UK

Office space, Retail, Student accommodation

271 beds


Located in one of the world’s most prestigious university cities and part of the wider CB1 regeneration scheme of Cambridge railway station and its surrounding areas, the £75 million development delivered 586 student bedrooms to Cambridge.

The Arch, Liverpool - students outer view

Liverpool, UK

Student accommodation

241 beds


The former Scandinavian Hotel, this landmark building is dominated by Liverpool’s Imperial Arch, the largest outside of China, and enjoys views of the magnificent Anglican Cathedral.

The Electra, Liverpool - external building

Liverpool, UK

Student accommodation

90 beds


Completed in 2014, this development comprises of 90 high grade studio apartments and is situated in the heart of Liverpool’s university district and cultural quarter.

ESG gardens
land acquisition - Broadcasting Tower, Leeds

Land Acquisition

We are actively seeking land acquisition opportunities across the UK, with particular interest in Russell Group University Cities. We have substantial funds available and have a no-nonsense approach to acquisition. All land will be considered, with or without planning permission.

Our preference is for large brownfield city centre sites, with opportunity for mixed use regeneration including Purpose Built Student Accommodation, co-living and residential.

We will also consider transformation of existing a premises into residential accommodation.

Our experienced team

We have extensive experience in handling the intricacies of large-scale site acquisition. You can trust our knowledgeable team to guide you through the process with expertise and professionalism.

We are always ready to have an informal discussion at your convenience.


What our clients say

“It was a pleasure working with the Downing team on a recent transaction. Everyone in the organisation, from building managers through to the senior leadership, demonstrated creativity, professionalism and integrity. We look forward to working together again in the future.”

James Rosenfeld

Managing Director at Blackstone

“As one of the longest standing private Student developers, owner and operators in the UK, Downing has consistently demonstrated an ability to create modern, well located and expertly run communities for their customers. Their track record is undeniable and I look forward to working with them for many years to come.”

Joe Guilfoyle

Head of Savills Capital Advisors

“The move to The Capital was a huge decision for us at UKBA and therefore needed a construction company we could trust – not just with our brief on fit-out but with the security implications involved.  The George Downing Construction team were easy to work with – they understood our requirements from the start, delivered on time and within our budget and made the whole process a seamless and successful one.”

Hilary Dalton

Assistant Director at UK Border Agency

“Downing worked with Leeds Met in designing, building and financing a new development for our Faculty of Arts and Society. The design made a stunning addition to the Leeds skyline and throughout the process we found Downing’s attitude both positive and refreshing.”

Peter Slee

Vice Chancellor of Leeds Beckett University

“Well executed and deftly placed, the Broadcasting Place project positions itself as a strong contrast and yet still feels complementary to its context.”

Gordon Gill

CTBUH Awards Chair

“Downing have brought extensive commercial developer experience to the planning and design of the NUBS building. Throughout this process they have shown their willingness to appreciate and understand the needs of the HE Sector and to adapt to our specific requirements.”

Clare Rogers

Director of Estates at Newcastle University

“I would have no hesitation recommending George Downing Construction. When we expanded our office within The Port of Building, we were working to an incredibly tight timetable. Downing completed our fit-outs on time and within budget and we were able to move into our offices without any negative impact on business. Our staff and directors are delighted with the quality of the finished product.”

John Webb

Senior Director at NYK Group Europe Ltd