10/15/2014 08:00 am ET Updated Oct 15, 2014

The Reality Of A Midwest Boomtown: Manhattan-Size Rents In North Dakota

Williston, North Dakota doesn't exactly come to mind when listing the bustling metropolises of America. That is, the small town in the northwest portion of the state made little nationwide news until recently. Yet these days, the town of 30,000 is a burgeoning hub of business.

This is all mostly thanks to an oil boom, which has caused thousands to flock to the town, where living-wage jobs are aplenty. This boom, unfortunately, has created a host of other problems for the city.

"This is a little town that has exploded. They simply can't provide cheap enough, affordable housing for people," Jesse Moss, director of the Williston-centric documentary "The Overnighters," said in a HuffPost Live interview Friday. "So they sleep in their cars, they sleep on the streets. In fact, rents in Williston are comparable to Manhattan and San Francisco."

The Williston Herald reported in February that the average cost for a 700-square foot apartment in Williston is $2,394 a month, easily highest in the country.

Moss' film focuses on the personal casualties of Williston, and how a local pastor is helping house some of the people who came to Williston for a job and found zero housing.

"It just can't accommodate this influx of tens of thousands of people," Moss told host Caroline Modarressy-Tehrani. "They do find jobs, but to survive in Williston is much, much harder than people realize."

Watch the rest of the clip above, and catch the full HuffPost Live conversation here.

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