There’s very little on this Dudley Square lot in Boston’s Rox­bury neigh­bor­hood. But a trio of archi­tec­ture stu­dents sees a future where the parcel between Wash­ington Street and Har­rison Avenue could one day accom­mo­date luxury housing, small lofts for recent col­lege grad­u­ates, and family res­i­dences inspired by Boston’s iconic mul­ti­family row houses, cre­ating new oppor­tu­ni­ties and pros­perity for a neigh­bor­hood in flux.

The model doesn’t just apply to Dudley Square either, though the stu­dents have pre­sented their pro­posal to pro­fes­sional archi­tects and devel­opers plan­ning projects in this up-​​and-​​coming area of Boston; the space will soon fea­ture a new munic­ipal building and is close to major employers like Boston Med­ical Center and edu­ca­tional hubs such as North­eastern. Fifth-​​year archi­tec­ture stu­dents Ryan Matthew, Chris Mar­ciano, and Mark Munroe believe their design could help develop new areas with a diverse group of residents.

You can’t just sat­u­rate a com­mu­nity with one par­tic­ular type of res­i­dent,” said Mar­ciano. “When you have an area with a number of dif­ferent back­grounds, you create an envi­ron­ment where everyone ben­e­fits from the pres­ence of everyone else.”

The trio’s pro­posal, which they call the Blair Res­i­dences, focused on cre­ating a high-​​density housing envi­ron­ment without over­crowding. The plan’s design included lim­iting the number of each building’s utility areas by placing bath­rooms and kitchens in close prox­imity. It also incor­po­rated common space and parking, key fac­tors in high-​​quality living.

The three com­po­nents of the Blair Residents—single-resident lofts designed by Mar­ciano, luxury units designed by Matthew, and family homes designed by Munroe—create a housing envi­ron­ment that meets the needs of higher-​​salaried workers, recent col­lege grad­u­ates looking for an afford­able one-​​bedroom space (which are few and far between in and around Boston), and fam­i­lies already living in Dudley Square or nearby.

The stu­dents com­pleted the Blair Res­i­dent project this fall in the School of Architecture’s Housing Design Studio class taught by lec­turer Jonathan Evans, the senior designer for down­town archi­tec­ture firm Utile. Their work rep­re­sented just one project of about a dozen cre­ated by stu­dents, each of whom brought unique per­spec­tives to reshaping the neigh­bor­hood. Much of the work was pre­sented at RISE, the university’s annual research and schol­ar­ship expo­si­tion held in March.

It can be dif­ferent to find oppor­tu­ni­ties for inno­va­tion in these market-​​driven building types,” Evans said. “But our stu­dents manage to design pro­to­types and apply them in a real-​​world con­text. There’s some­thing very projective—even utopian—about devel­oping a strategy for a spe­cific site that could also be taken elsewhere.”

Boston, like urban areas across the country, des­per­ately needs new housing stock—and not just the luxury units that have popped up across the city in recent years. Last year’s Greater Boston Housing Report Card, an annual pub­li­ca­tion released by the Dukakis Center, an urban studies think tank within Northeastern’s School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs, said the city needs to add 12,000 new units of housing every year to simply meet demand; Boston added only about 6,000 new units per year between 2005 and 2011, cre­ating an enor­mous demand for housing.

Dudley Square is already a transit hub, and pro­posed devel­op­ment is leading offi­cials to con­sider new trans­porta­tion options, such as an exten­sion of the Silver Line, a rapid bus net­work that sup­ple­ments the Mass­a­chu­setts Bay Trans­porta­tion Authority’s existing train and bus service.

Dudley is a neigh­bor­hood with a rich his­tory,” Mar­ciano said. “Its loca­tion and new devel­op­ment are already bringing in new jobs and drawing people there, so we need housing options that will sup­port that growth.”

This mixed-​​use model can sup­port growth in cities across the United States, an enor­mous number of which need not only new housing options, but also the ability to meet the needs of a diverse cohort of poten­tial residents.

This is a project that could be applied to cities all over the U.S., and even beyond,” Munroe said.

Click the images below to see ren­der­ings of the build­ings designed by Matthew, Munroe, and Marciano.