Tue09162014

News

Council approves directional signs for Los Altos' Woodland Plaza

Council approves directional signs for Los Altos' Woodland Plaza


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Los Altos City Council last week approved the installation of two new directional signs on Foothill Expressway pointing motorists to the Woodland Plaza Shopping District.

The Los Altos City Council voted unanimou...

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Schools

New head of curriculum’s ideologies align with LASD

New head of curriculum’s ideologies align with LASD


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Edsel Clark, new Los Altos School District assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction, above, facilitates a junior high mathematics curriculum meeting last week.

Edsel Clark, Ed.D., new assistant superintend...

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Community

Closing reception caps Foothill photo show on rural China

Closing reception caps Foothill photo show on rural China


From IncredibleTravelPhotos.com
Jacque Kae’s “Mischievous” is one of the many photographs on display at Foothill College this month.

Photographs of the land and culture of Huangshan and Zhangjiajie, China, are on exhibit through Sept. 26 at t...

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Sports

Spartans shine in opener

Spartans shine in opener


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mountain View High’s Frank Kapp snares a touchdown pass from quarterback Owen Mountford in Friday’s win.

Leading by a point at halftime, the Mountain View High football team outscored visiting Del Mar 20-0 the rest of...

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Comment

A look ahead to the Nov. 4 election: Editorial

Election season is upon us. In Los Altos, we have three major local races ahead – two seats on the Los Altos City Council, and three seats each on the Los Altos School District and Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District boards of tr...

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Special Sections

Renovation complete,  Villa Siena looks to future

Renovation complete, Villa Siena looks to future


Above and Below Photos Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier; Left Photo Courtesy of Villa Siena
Villa Siena in Mountain View recently underwent a $35 million face-lift. The five-year project expanded their senior living community’s space and ability to serv...

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Business

Transitioning from postage to pets

Transitioning from postage to pets


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
A new Pet Food Express store is scheduled to open at the Blossom Valley Shopping Center this month.

A site that previously existed to meet postal service needs will soon have an entirely different purpose – serving pe...

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Books

‘The Humans’ transcends alien genre to glean human insights

‘The Humans’ transcends alien genre to glean human insights


A good story about aliens is always great fun to read – after all, it’s only by attempting to understand the human race from another perspective that we can see ourselves more objectively.

But readers who might be tempted to dismiss ye...

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People

JEANNE PACKARD

After suffering a stroke in May, Jeanne Packard died August 10, 2014 at age 83. She was born in 1931 in Berlin, Germany, the only child of Emily Channel and Frank Howe Packard of Chicago, IL. Jeanne is survived by 5 great grandchildren. She was a lon...

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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

'Trailer Park' opens in Los Altos

'Trailer Park' opens in Los Altos


Courtesy of Los
The cast of Los Altos Stage Company’s “The Great American Trailer Park Musical” includes, from left, Mylissa Malley as Lin, Vanessa Alvarez as Betty, and Christina Bolognini as Pickles. Altos Stage Company

Los Altos Stage Company...

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Spiritual Life

9/11 survivor Michael Hingson finds purpose

Imagine walking down 78 flights of stairs – 1,463 individual steps. You are in imminent danger as you walk, unsure whether you can make it out of the building before it collapses or explodes. Struggling for each breath, you smell the heavy sten...

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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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City project proposes to coordinate directional signs


Photo By: Photo Courtesy City of Los Altos
Photo Photo Courtesy City Of Los Altos The city council is set to review a Wayfinding sign design concept that streamlines the look of directional signs throughout the city.

The Los Altos City Council is scheduled to review its project to streamline and unify the city’s directional and street signs.

According to Los Altos Economic Development Manager Kathy Kleinbaum, the council Jan. 8 will evaluate the city’s Wayfinding Sign design concept, reviewed by the Planning and Transportation Commission (PTC) in early December.

The project aimed to design a visually unifying look for the various directional signs throughout the city, especially those that lead visitors to key city destinations.

A city staff report on the project noted that the existing directional signs, developed over several decades, lacked “cohesion and are not comprehensive in nature.”

“The goal is to try to create a unified sign system to direct people to major destinations, including commercial districts and civic destinations,” Kleinbaum said.

The city’s Wayfinding Sign Task Force, appointed by the city council in May, and Explore Creative, a Sonoma-based graphic-design firm hired by the city, developed the proposed design. Task force members included representatives from the council, the Los Altos Village Association, the PTC, the Los Altos Chamber of Commerce and property owners from the city’s commercial districts.

According to the staff report, the signage program’s proposed design drew inspiration from the “rustic, yet modern nature of Los Altos.” Signs would include the use of reclaimed wood, black iron framing and stone bases with an off-white type and forest-green accent color scheme.

“We were looking for rustic materials with a clean, readable format,” Kleinbaum said. “You have to be able to read these signs traveling at 35 or 40 miles per hour.”

The unified look creates “general branding for the city so that people know they’re in Los Altos,” she said. “It helps direct visitors to key destinations along the most simple, direct routes.”

The project also has a practical purpose, Kleinbaum said. The task force identified the need to provide directional signs and entry markers for public parking in the downtown area and Loyola Corners.

“It’s something we’re lacking right now,” she said. “Other towns have signs directing patrons to off-street parking.”

Presently, Kleinbaum said, the placement of some directional signs prevents motorists from navigating to city destinations efficiently. The project calls for upgrading and replacing directional markers along the city’s major thoroughfares, including El Camino Real, San Antonio Road and Foothill Expressway.

The report specifically noted the need to replace the pair of identity markers for the civic center area, as well as the downtown identity sign in the flowered median at Main Street and Foothill Expressway.

If the council approves the design, a cost estimate must be determined before any timeline for implementation of the proposed signage can be scheduled.

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