Fri10242014

News

Council hosts study session on downtown parking garage

Council hosts study session on downtown parking garage


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Los Altos City Council continues to explore options to address parking constraints in the downtown triangle.

The Los Altos City Council last week held the first of two study sessions to discuss the potential construct...

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Schools

LAHS Science and Technology Week features medical examiner

LAHS Science and Technology Week features medical examiner


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
A Los Altos High School student learns how to use robotic surgical equipment at the school’s Science and Technology Week event last year. Students can also attend hands-on presentations at this year’s event, w...

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Community

Ahoy, matey: Pirate Manor ramps up Halloween display

Ahoy, matey: Pirate Manor ramps up Halloween display


Town Crier File Photo
Pirate Manor is once again scheduled to arrive in the front yard of Dane and Jill Glasgow’s home on Manor Way in Los Altos, just in time for Halloween.

Although not the Walking Dead, pirate skeletons have been brought to li...

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Sports

Lancers rule the pool against Spartans

Lancers rule the pool against Spartans


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Eric Reitmeir launches the ball over Mountain View High driver David Niehaus (2) and goalie Kenny Tang. The host Lancers won Friday’s non-league game 9-3.

There wasn’t a lot on the line Friday when ...

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Comment

Reeder, Fung for El Camino HCD: Editorial

The good news for the El Camino Healthcare District (formerly the El Camino Hospital District, for those still getting used to the new name) is that there is a contested election Nov. 4 for the district’s board of directors. Three candidates are runn...

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Special Sections

Plant-based diet offers benefits

Plant-based diet offers benefits


Photo by Ramya Krishna
Los Altos resident Nandini Krishna prepares a meat-free dish According to author Caldwell B. Esselstyn Jr., M.D., a plant-based diet can help prevent cancer.

Shirley Okita of Los Altos has found that adhering to a mostly plant...

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Business

New shop offers haute couture for girls

New shop offers haute couture for girls


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Girls @ Los Altos at 239 State St. offers clothing lines such as Nellystella as well as toys and other items for girls.

Cecilia Chen opened The Girls @ Los Altos as a tribute to the party dress. Whether it’s for...

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Books

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mimi Sommers, who works at a Los Altos dentist’s office, recently wrote a children’s book.

A local dental hygienist recently published a book that aims to ease parents and children during a sometimes anxious e...

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People

BARBARA DARLING MERIDETH

1946-2014

Born in Palo Alto, raised in Los Altos, retired in southern Oregon. Survived by Peter James Merideth, sons Matthew, Jacob and John Merideth, the loves of her life.

She was a housewife who took great pride in her home, her surroundings and...

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Travel

Falling leaves: Four places in California to see autumn colors

Falling leaves: Four places in California to see autumn colors


Courtesy of Castello di Amorosa
Castello di Amorosa in Calistoga, above, boasts a beautiful setting for viewing fall’s colors – and sampling the vineyard’s wines.

Yes, Virginia, there is fall in California.

The colors pop out in...

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Stepping Out

'Sleepy Hollow' awakens at Bus Barn

'Sleepy Hollow' awakens at Bus Barn



Los Altos Youth Theatre’s production of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” a musical based on Washington Irving’s classic story, is set to run through Nov. 2 at Bus Barn Theater. The cast comprises 27 young actors, directed by Cindy Powell. Courtesy o...

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Spiritual Life

Magazine

Local events add color to autumn calendar

Local events add color to autumn calendar


Van Houtte/town crier Visitors make their way through the Children’s Alley.

As Los Altos’ signature Chinese Pistache trees exchange their summer green for vibrant hues of yellow, orange and red in the fall, an abundance of local events also ad...

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New concept for downtown plaza in the works


Photo By: Courtesy of City of Los Altos
Photo Courtesy Of City Of Los Altos

A new concept for Community Plaza calls for its reconstruction in front of Wells Fargo Bank, creating a new intersection that includes a right turn from Main Street onto State.

Downtown Los Altos’ Community Plaza may be in line for a face-lift in the future.

According to Los Altos Assistant City Manager James Walgren, city staffers presented a conceptual redesign of the plaza – located at the corner of Main and State streets – last week at a Parks and Recreation Commission (PARC) meeting.

The proposal calls for the plaza to be reconfigured by extending over existing roadway on State Street to the front of Wells Fargo Bank. A new intersection would then be constructed, with State Street realigned as a right turn off Main Street at Citibank.

Walgren cautioned that the concept is preliminary in nature and called the idea “a rough concept to this point just to get the conversation going.”

“The Community Plaza right now is underutilized,” Walgren continued, adding that iterations of the redesign were initially developed by city staff a couple of years ago. “If we’re going to have a community plaza, we want one that is successful.”

The current design – intended to replace the one one created 20 years ago – includes a water feature, seating areas and clusters of tree-lined areas. He added that the design is hardly set in stone, noting that several additions – or subtractions – could take place over time. For example, Walgren said, the redesign could include a food kiosk or a play area for children instead.

He added that other features, such as removable bollards, could also be included, which would allow the city to block off a section of State Street for events like the weekly Farmers’ Market.

Walgren added that while he hasn’t received any specific estimates from engineers, the project would likely cost $3 million to $5 million and may be funded through existing or future parking in-lieu fees collected by the city.

“It’s money that can be reinvested in this plaza,” he noted.

Walgren conceded that the concept still has several hurdles to clear and could be a long way from becoming reality. He noted that the city has yet to engage in discussions with local bank representatives about the idea. He added that PARC is expected to make a recommendation on the project – as well as other park projects – in April.

If recommended by PARC, the concept would move on for consideration by the city council as part of its annual Capital Improvement Program review in May.

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