Sat09202014

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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Letters to the Editor

Where’s benefit with Third Street building?

Regarding the proposed 5,500-square-foot building headed for city council review, I must agree with the dissenting Planning Commissioners Ronit Bodner and Jon Baer that the building has an inappropriate “look and feel” for downtown Los Altos (“Third Street building proposal heads to council,” April 10). I would go even further than that.

I examined the site closely and noted that every building on the block is no more than two, maybe three stories. None is four. In addition, the office and residential buildings adjacent have generous (I would estimate 20-plus feet) setbacks.

The proposed building directly abuts the sidewalk, big-box style. How on earth does this fit in downtown Los Altos? This will create a “canyon” effect for pedestrians, bicyclists and drivers.

Numerous mature trees will be removed. The new ones are fewer in number, smaller and, from the drawing, confined to a narrow strip adjacent to the concrete walkway.

In addition, although underground parking will be added, 18 above-ground spaces (which currently lend an open, airy feeling to the site) will be lost.

I see no benefit whatsoever to anyone who currently resides in Los Altos or Los Altos Hills. Instead, we will be forced to put up with months of construction and its attendant noise, dirt, trucks and street closures.

Does the loss of open space, trees, skyline, and so on, make up for 20-30 additional bodies in town who might spend a few dollars at Los Altos shops or restaurants?

I personally would prefer to see the site left undeveloped for the foreseeable future to preserve just a little more of our small-town feel.

Kathy Brady

Los Altos Hills

Include larger setback for Third Street project

I want to express my thanks to Zach Dahl, senior planner for the city of Los Altos, for helping me understand the building plans for the project at 86 Third St.

Third Street is now lined on both sides with expensive and stylish condos that are set back far enough to make a nice walk to downtown Los Altos.

The big-box-style mixed-use redevelopment project, built out to the sidewalk, would totally change the beauty of this area. I know that removing trees is a major discussion at this point, but I am more concerned that putting a three-story wall only 2 feet from the sidewalk would ruin the walk to downtown for those of us who use it on a daily basis.

I appreciate the plan to section the change by going from a 13-foot setback that matches the nearby Chartwell condominiums to a 6-foot section, but then it’s 55 feet of a three-story wall with a few windows, only 2 feet from the sidewalk.

The proposed changes would make Third Street look like a walk through an industrial park, not the nice residential area it is today.

I understand that city zoning allows the 2-foot setback, but I hope that the Los Altos City Council will judge how this would change the entire street and the entrance to downtown.

If they keep at least a 6-foot setback rather than the proposed 2 feet, it would keep Third Street as a nice walk to downtown. Isn’t that what we all want – a nice-looking town?

Bob Moore

Los Altos

Collective Roots thanks De Martini Orchard

We wish to publicly thank Craig Kozy, owner of De Martini Orchard, for his kindness and generosity in hosting Collective Roots’ annual seedling sale for the second year in a row.

This fundraiser plays an important role in providing resources to support our cooking, nutrition and gardening programs in East Palo Alto.

Both Mr. Kozy and his employees were critical to the success of the event by providing space at the front of the market, publicizing and promoting the event to customers and helping us to market our plants in the best possible way.

We’re grateful to be connected to concerned community leaders like Mr. Kozy and his employees, who play such an important role in our communities.

Sally Chaves

Board vice president;

Kris Jensen

Executive director

Collective Roots

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