What happened in the late 80's is the stuff of legend--the great condo housing boom and bust. The housing boom of the 2000's was really never a boom, but compared to the current "recovery" it's significant.
The issue here is that the Boston Metro region has run out of geographic space and political space for the housing that would satisfy demand. Projects take a long time to get approved and developers try to focus on high return projects. Large scale work has to be branded as "luxury" to get off the ground.
Towers of ilium doesn't subscribe to graphology, but it's hard to imagine a scenario where housing starts get back to the apparently sustainable levels of the late 1990's.