Thu09182014

News

Meet the Mountain View City Council candidates

Meet the Mountain View City Council candidates


Nine candidates have filed to run for three open seats on the Mountain View City Council in the Nov. 4 election – none of them incumbents. The Town Crier asked them to introduce themselves to readers in the following Q&A format. We knew the...

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Schools

LASD committee looks to rank campus improvement projects

LASD committee looks to rank campus improvement projects


Traci Newell/Town Crier
The Los Altos School District’s newly expanded Facilities Advisory Committee met for the first time last week. The 28-member committee’s first task is to prioritize campus improvement projects.

The Los Altos Scho...

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Community

Sports

New-look Lancers find their footing

New-look Lancers find their footing


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Jenna Adams, left, and Carly Deale attempt to bump the ball Friday night. The juniors combined for 28 kills.

This year’s St. Francis High girls volleyball team faintly resembles last season’s squad ...

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Special Sections

MV Whisman teachers cite low pay

MV Whisman teachers cite low pay


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
An estimated 75 supporters of higher teacher pay turned out for the Sept. 4 Mountain View Whisman School District board meeting.

Teachers, trustees and administrators are recovering from a dramatic Mountain View Whism...

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Business

Skin rejuvenation studio joins Rancho

Skin rejuvenation studio joins Rancho


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Esthetician Marjan Kashi showcases one of the treatment rooms at her new studio, Pure Serenity Skincare at Rancho Shopping Center. Kashi provides services including microdermabrasion and various light and heat energy the...

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Books

A woman's perspective on the Greatest Generation

A woman's perspective on the Greatest Generation


During World War II, Virgilia Short Witzel, a young mother and U.S. Navy officer’s wife, grappled on the home front in Menlo Park with wartime rationing, shortages and loneliness. During the ensuing Cold War, she experienced adventure and misadventur...

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People

JERALD (JERRY) NELSON CHRISTIANSEN

JERALD (JERRY) NELSON CHRISTIANSEN

Resident of San Jose and Los Altos, California

July 21, 1931 to August 4, 2014

Born in Arimo, Idaho, to Jerald Emmett and Rebecca Henderson Nelson Christiansen. Raised in Davis and Riverside, California, with summers in Downey, Idaho, and in Loga...

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Travel

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska


Sandy Powell/Special to the Town Crier
Los Altos resident and bird photographer Sandy Powell recently visited Homer, Alaska, to photograph Sandhill cranes, below. While there, Powell also encountered moose, left.

Los Altos resident Sandy Powell, a...

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Stepping Out

Pear puts on a pair of plays

Pear puts on a pair of plays


J. Smith/Special to the Town Crier
Dan Kapler (as Teddy) and Betsy Kruse Craig (Trish) star in Pear Avenue Theatre’s “House.”

The Pear Avenue Theatre production of two interlocking comedies by Alan Ayckbourn – “House&...

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Spiritual Life

Back to Church Sunday offers opportunity to recommit

The children in Los Altos are back to school, and I can still hear parents cheering. Summer is officially over, even if the calendar doesn’t quite think so.

Parents have attended Back to School nights to meet their children’s teachers. B...

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Magazine

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living


Courtesy of Spectrum Interior Design
In place of a more traditional fireplace, this modern living room features a linear-flame firebox that emits heat while offering a sculpturelike design element.

After traveling the world and visiting a host...

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Good news as PG&E hydrotests gas pipeline in Mountain View

Photo Refugio Garcia/Special To The Town Crier PG&E crews completed hydrostatic testing of a section of the gas transmission pipelines in Mountain View and discovered no leaks.

Mountain View residents can breathe a sigh of relief – without smelling gas.

PG&E crews completed the hydrostatic pressure testing of the natural gas pipeline that began three weeks ago and are working on the final stretch of the project, according to Mike Fuller, public works director for the city of Mountain View.

“Most of the pipeline has been tested and they found no drop in pressure,” Fuller said.

PG&E representatives scheduled two community meetings last month to explain the process and answer residents’ questions regarding the testing before it began.

“The tests will be used to enhance safety,” said Don Hall, PG&E manager of energy and solutions.

Utility officials will compile the data and use the results to verify the integrity of lines that share similar characteristics with those involved in the San Bruno pipeline explosion last September, Hall said.

The similarities in the lines include their ages as well as the type of welds employed more than six decades ago.

“We don’t have records to validate the amount of pressure the lines can hold,” said Brittany Chord, PG&E spokeswoman.

The test results will become part of an official record for the California Public Utilities Commission.

The hydrostatic testing – at Sierra Vista Avenue behind Crittenden Middle School and on Garcia Avenue near Shoreline Golf Links – required draining the lines of natural gas, refilling them with water under elevated pressures, then testing for leaks.

Crews filled sections of the 1.5 miles of underground lines in the city with water under double the amount of pressure when filled with natural gas.

PG&E officials notified neighbors, residents and businesses in the area of the work.

“We didn’t want residents to become alarmed if they smelled gas at the time we drained the line,” said Hall, assuring that “the gas isn’t combustible at low volumes.”

PG&E Superintendent John Corona acted as incident commander at the scene of the San Bruno pipeline explosion last September. Corona answered questions about PG&E’s plan for dealing with a similar situation in the future.

“Our strategy’s going to be a little different now,” he said, adding, “We haven’t had a thing like this happen in 100 years of our history.”

Corona explained that emergency responders and PG&E service crews lacked coordination among their agencies, inadvertently stifling efforts to contain the fire in San Bruno.

“We’re actively working with first responders,” he said. “We want them to know what to do when they roll up on a gas leak, and what type of access points to avoid.”

Corona said PG&E has begun coordinating with a number of different fire departments in California.

For more information, call (800) 743-5000 or visit www.pge.com.

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