Nestled just beyond the eastern
boundary of the City of London,
Aldgate has become a very
desirable area for commercial
and residential schemes alike.
A number of large developments have
sprung up in recent times, choosing the
area because of its proximity to the square
mile and London’s other financial district of
Canary Wharf as well as its good and varied
One of these schemes is located above
Aldgate East underground station, where
work is currently underway on Phase 2 of
Aldgate Developments’ masterplan.
This second phase consists of One
Braham, (Phase 1 consisted of the adjacent
Aldgate Tower, see NSC January/February
2014) a 21-storey office block offering
30,475m2 of floor space.
Sat on a plot formerly occupied by Beagle
House, main contractor McLaughlin &
Harvey (McL&H) started onsite in August
2018 on what is its largest London project
to date. The company inherited a cleared
site, as the demolition had been completed
by another contractor, along with the
installation of the two-level deep concrete
“As much of the preliminary works had
been done, our first task was to complete the
basement structure to ground floor level and
construct the concrete core, in preparation
for the steelwork erection to begin,” explains
McL&H Site Manager Darren Donnelly.
The steel frame begins at ground floor
level and is based around a grid that has
primary columns spaced at 9m centres with
internal spans of up to 13.7m.
According to Arup Project Engineer
Catriona Gillies, the building has a very
constrained structural depth, resulting from
planning restrictions that aim to preserve
some key landmark views that would
otherwise be obscured by One Braham.
Keeping within a permitted height, the
design has used fabricated plate girders to
support the metal deck flooring system.
These girders have bespoke holes to allow all
of the services to be accommodated within
“By using shallow heavy plate girders
we’ve been able to incorporate one extra
floor level into the planning envelope,” says
Overall, the scheme adopts a
contemporary office feel with exposed soffits
throughout. Much of the completed steel
frame will also be left exposed and so a lot
of care has been taken to the connection
“The building is our second office building
for the same client in the same locality.
The client’s brief requested a much more
‘industrial feel’ to the building following
their experience letting Aldgate Tower
Located on the edge of the City of London, a 21-storey
commercial building represents Phase 2 of a prestigious
Aldgate redevelopment scheme.
One Braham, London
McLaughlin & Harvey
Steel tonnage: 3,700t
girders have been