By 2009, the depths of the last recession, building permits had fallen to fewer than 8,000, and in 2012, three years after the recession, building permits issued for housing units were still less than half the number of 2005. Meanwhile, the state’s population grew by more than 400,000, according to the census.

“There’s simply no question that we’re not building enough housing units to meet demand,” said Barry Bluestone, an economist and director of the Dukakis Center for Urban and Regional Policy at Northeastern University.

The expected consequences can be lifted right out of the most basic Economics 101 textbook: Supply shortages lead to rising prices.