Across the country, demand for affordable housing continues to exceed supply. The solution, then, should be clear: increase supply, by making it easier to build.

Some of the reasons it's hard to build are complex. Interest rates have surged, which raises the costs of both buying homes and building new ones. Labor shortages in construction-related trades remain dire, and intermittent supply-chain issues persist.

Those problems will be difficult to resolve. But a more basic one should (theoretically) not be so challenging: local zoning rules and regulatory environments that obstruct development, including in many places that claim to care most about residents burdened with unaffordable housing costs.

New York City is on track to complete only 11,300 new residential units this year, according to a report released Wednesday by the New York Building Congress, a trade group. That's roughly half the number completed last year, which were already too few. In a city of 8.3 million, where rents are stratospheric, it's positively pitiful.

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