Co-Living Could Be Coming to the South End

Meet 7INK by Ollie, the proposed final phase of the Ink Block development.

Rendering courtesy of Elkus Manfredi Architects and National Development

A high-end dormitory for adults may soon spring up in the South End.

Last week, Newton-based National Development proposed a 14-story “co-living” building to complete the neighborhood’s Ink Block complex. Along with Ollie, a real estate company based in New York, National Development envisions 245 tiny units, where residents would dwell in small spaces but spend most of their time elsewhere, like in the building’s communal areas.

The concept of co-living is centered around social activities, both in these common spaces and outside of them. Almost like a resident assistant in a dorm, the building will have a live-in “community manager.” According to the Globe, the manager will plan events like sightseeing tours and wine tastings for residents.

The development, to be called 7INK by Ollie, also boasts hotel-like amenities. It will offer free weekly cleaning services, complete with a change of sheets and towels and replenished bath products. The already furnished units—which aim to be less than 400 square feet—will come with Wi-Fi and cable.

Ollie operates co-living buildings in New York City and Pittsburgh, with two more under construction in Los Angeles and Jersey City. The company markets its micro-units and accompanying luxurious perks to young, hip urbanites in cities where housing costs are on the rise.

“You walk into this building and you feel like you’re in a millennial resort,” National Development managing partner Ted Tye told the Globe while speaking of another co-living building Ollie manages. “It’s kind of like a grown-up college experience.”

7INK by Ollie’s apartments will be made up of shared suites and micro-studios, all with places to sleep, bathe, and cook. While National Development has not announced pricing details, rent in co-living buildings is meant to be cheaper than average because of the units’ small sizes. The building is set to offer traditional yearlong leases for its apartments.

In a letter of intent to the Boston Planning and Development Agency filed earlier this month, National Development said 7INK by Ollie would “provide a new residential alternative not otherwise available in the city, through a service-enhanced residential model, substantial amenity spaces, and smaller-sized units.”

The project requires BPDA approval before construction can begin.

Rendering courtesy of Elkus Manfredi Architects and National Development


Madeline Bilis Associate Editor at Boston Magazine @madelinebilis
mbilis@bostonmagazine.com