Business & economy

Housing affordability worsened in Oregon in last decade with low construction rates

Capital Manor's original tower in Salem stands in the distance while construction crews build 17 new duplexes to the west. (Troy Brynelson/Salem Reporter)

Despite Oregon’s widespread housing shortage, the amount of housing built in the state during the last decade reached a record low.

That was one of the unexpected conclusions state economist Josh Lehner included in a blog post on the last day of 2019.

“On a population growth-adjusted basis, Oregon built fewer new housing units this decade than we have since at least World War II,” wrote Lehner. “With data going back nearly 60 years, never have we built fewer new units on a sustained basis than . . .