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Occupants of Tiny Homes Community in Alameda Face Evictions

ALAMEDA (KPIX) -- Some folks who have created a tiny home community in Alameda may be forced out soon.

But the problem isn't the people living there, it's their livestock.

From the outside, it looks like a storage yard for shipping containers.

But inside is an urban farm with plants, animals, and even tiny homes.

The problem is that the lot is zoned for industrial use and city inspectors say animals and people cannot stay there.

There are also a couple of tiny homes there.

Alameda Mayor Trish Herrera Spencer said, "The number one concern is always safety. And that's in fact what these zoning regulations are based upon."

Aside from zoning violation, inspectors also found code violations.

City inspectors believe people converted some of the shipping containers into living spaces.

But the group that runs the space, Alameda Maker Farm, believes it is safe. Some of the folks who live there include engineers working at startups.

Wolfgang Brinck, a member of the Alameda Maker Farm said, "I don't see any danger. It's an imaginary issue I think."

Nonetheless, the city is demanding the group clear out the animals and the people.

At last week's city council meeting, the group took in one of the farm animals, asking city leaders for more time to move.

Renee McLaughlin, a tiny house dweller said, "We're looking to have a new space that we can have both the maker space, the urban farm space, and some living space with it."

The group is suggesting the city provide space for them at the Alameda Point, the former Naval Air Station.

Mayor Spencer said, "There may or may not be space at the point. I know people think there's all this space not being used. But honestly it is being used."

Nearby businesses say the people living there are good neighbors, though they say about ten or so pigs got out recently and wandered onto the street.

One business owner across the street says the city is the doing the right thing to bring the place up to code.

Business owner Michael O'Connell works across the strees and described the place as "a mess."

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