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EXCERPT: “On a whim last fall, Loren Schirber paid $65,000 for a 3-acre strip of land on St. Paul’s east side that looks like a useless patch of broken-up blacktop and overgrown weeds. But he has a vision for the plot: an entire cooperative neighborhood of tiny houses with 52 units, gardens, chickens, a community center and a dog run. Before construction on the ‘East Yard Cooperative’ can begin, however, Schirber has some big hurdles to overcome. For starters, the land is bordered by two active rail tracks — locals know it ‘Railroad Island’ . . . The houses Schirber wants to build would likely feel the trains’ impact more. They’re tiny: between 280 and 530 square feet, plus a sleeping loft . . . At a recent public interest meeting, east side residents like Paris Yarbrough raised another concern: gentrification. ‘People want to talk about tiny homes. We’re losing affordable units at an alarming rate. So where are these people going to go?’ Yarbrough asked. ‘They’re not going to go in tiny homes because the average east sider can’t live in a tiny home.’ While technically affordable, Yarbrough said a tiny house is impractical for many people in the area who have blended, multigenerational family. She fears these new, trendy tiny houses will attract outsiders with more money than the rest of the neighborhood.” FULLSTORY: http://bit.ly/2gqYY1L