It is believed the man, who was not a worker at the site, had ‘fallen from height’ after entering the site late on Tuesday.
The site on Central Road in Leeds city centre is believed to be the old House of Fraser site where HG Construction is building a 370-bed student room scheme.
A spokesperson for West Yorkshire Police said: “At 7.54am today, police received a report of the body of a man having been found at a construction site in Central Road in Leeds city centre.
“The man was pronounced dead at the scene. He is believed to have entered the site last night and fallen from height from a crane. He was not a member of staff working at the site.”
A police cordon and road closure are in place while the police investigate, but the incident is not believed to be suspicious.