In addi­tion, housing is lim­ited. The new arrivals are com­peting with middle– and lower-​​income fam­i­lies for the older, existing housing stock, said Barry Blue­stone, the director of the Dukakis Center for Urban and Regional Policy at North­eastern Uni­ver­sity. “The prices of triple-​​deckers are going through the roof now,” he said, and long­time res­i­dents are being priced out of the market.

Rents, he said, are the third highest in the country, after New York and San Fran­cisco. And housing prices in parts of the city are astro­nom­ical: the median price of a single-​​family home in down­town Boston, including the South End, the Back Bay and Beacon Hill, is now $2.1 mil­lion, according to the Warren Group; a year ago, it was $1.8 million.

It’s not too dif­fi­cult to build housing for mil­lion­aires or for poor people,” Mr. Blue­stone said, noting that gov­ern­ment pro­grams help the very poor. “But what we can’t pro­duce is afford­able housing for working families.”

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