Fri08012014

News

"Brown is the new green," says local water district


Lina Broydo/Special to the Town Crier
Are downtown Los Altos flower pots getting too much water? The Santa Clara Valley Water District plans to hire “water cops” to discourage overwatering.

The Santa Clara Valley Water District is spending nearl...

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Schools

Foothill camps prepare local students for STEM careers

Foothill camps prepare local students for STEM careers


Photos Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Middle school students make robotic hands using 3-D printers during a STEM Summer Camp at Foothill College.

From designing roller coasters to developing biodegradable plastics, high school students received an i...

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Community

Local entrepreneur opens home to Afghan and Rwandan women

Local entrepreneur opens home to Afghan and Rwandan women


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Businesswomen Joan Mazimhaka of Rwanda, third from left, and Fakhria Ibrahimi of Afghanistan, in orange, traveled to the U.S. with a 26-woman delegation through the Peace Through Business program.

Employees scoop ice ...

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Comment

Moving on: The Rockey Road

Just over a month ago, we decided to put our house on the market. My husband and I had been tossing around the idea of moving back to the area where we grew up, which is only approximately 40 minutes from here. Of course, Los Altos is a great place t...

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Special Sections

Long live the lawn: Los Altos native offers drought-resistant strategies

Long live the lawn: Los Altos native offers drought-resistant strategies


Bill Steiner’s grass is green, left, even amid the drought. He followed Max Todd’s water and maintainence instructions after having his lawn aerated, Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier

Green lawns are not necessarily on the endangered list during the d...

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Business

Halo heads to Los Altos: Blow-dry bar founder opens new First Street location Monday

Halo heads to Los Altos: Blow-dry bar founder opens new First Street location Monday


ElLie Van Houtte/ Town Crier
Armed with blow dryers, Halo founder Rosemary Camposano, left, and store manager Nikki Thomas prepare for the blow-dry bar’s grand opening on First Street Monday.

A blow-dry bar is set to open downtown Monday, and i...

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Books

"Frozen in Time" chronicles harrowing WWII rescue attempts


Many readers can’t resist a true-life adventure story, especially those that shine a spotlight on people who exhibit supreme courage in the face of adversity and end up surviving – or not – against the odds.

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People

DR. ALFRED HUGHES

Long time Los Altos resident, Dr. Alfred Hughes, died May 1st after a long illness. Dr. Hughes was born in 1927 in Maspeth, NY. He served in the US Army from 1945-6, attended Brooklyn Polytechnic University, then graduated from Reed College in Portla...

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Travel

Travel Tidbit: Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe offers spa getaway

Travel Tidbit: Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe offers spa getaway


Courtesy of Ritz-Carlton
The Ritz-Carlton in Lake Tahoe offers fall getaway packages that include spa treatments and yoga classes.

Fall in North Lake Tahoe boasts crisp mornings and opportunities to spend quality time in the mountains. Specially ...

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Stepping Out

'Wizard' winds down at Bus Barn

'Wizard' winds down at Bus Barn


Town Crier file photo
Local actors rehearse a scene from “The Wizard of Oz.”

Los Altos Youth Theatre and Los Altos Stage Company’s collaborative production of “The Wizard of Oz” is slated to close Sunday at Bus Barn Theater, 97 Hillview Ave.

T...

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Spiritual Life

Stanford University appoints new dean for religious life

Stanford University appoints new dean for religious life


Shaw

Stanford University named the Very Rev. Dr. Jane Shaw, dean of Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, its new dean for religious life.

Provost John Etchemendy announced Shaw’s appointment July 21, adding that she also will join the faculty in...

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Magazine

Festival features fun for everyone

Festival features fun for everyone


TOWN CRIER FILE PHOTO
The Los Altos Arts & Wine Festival boasts more than 375 craft and arts booths.

This weekend’s 35th annual Los Altos Arts & Wine Festival promises to be jam-packed with fun activities for just about everyone. The eve...

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Realtors get a peek at local redevelopment


Photo By: Town Crier file photo
Photo Town Crier File Photo

Los Altos’ planning services manager previewed ongoing efforts such as the San Antonio Road streetscape project, above, at SILVAR’s district realtor tour meeting in May.
Town Crier Report

Los Altos Planning Services Manager David Kornfield offered Silicon Valley Association of Realtors members a preview of the city’s redevelopment plans at their local district realtor tour meeting in May.

Describing Los Altos as a “very special place” with a traditional downtown, Kornfield said the city has tried to maintain the village character while keeping up with the times. He conceded that in an effort to retain the community’s charm, the city had intentionally created cumbersome zoning regulations. Over time, officials came to realize that the city must evolve.

Los Altos has faced many challenges as a result of dated facilities, according to Kornfield. In the past few years, the city has focused on planning for the future with the help of committees comprising residents who represent all interests – from homeowners to business owners.

Kornfield said the city has come a long way in its mission to create a more vibrant downtown and increase its economic potential while keeping its traditional character intact. Over the past three years, he noted, the city has removed some zoning restrictions, eased regulations for office development and increased building height limits. In addition to zoning changes, the city has invested in infrastructure and underground utilities and improved its sewer lines, Kornfield said.

Money has been spent to revitalize downtown, he added, pointing to the city’s First Street and San Antonio Road streetscape projects, among other efforts.

“Now, everything is coming together,” he said.

Private investment soon followed public investment, Kornfield said, highlighting projects such as the Packard Foundation headquarters on Second Street and mixed-use and residential developments throughout downtown. He labeled other ongoing developments, including Enchanté, the boutique hotel at the corner of Main Street and San Antonio Road, “assets” for the city.

While Los Altos is in the midst of considerable redevelopment, it still faces some constraints – including a shortage of parking spaces, Kornfield concluded.

“This issue affects the business environment and needs to be addressed,” he said, citing the city’s ongoing development of a Downtown Parking Management Plan.

The Silicon Valley Association of Realtors provided information for this article. For more information, email Rose Meily at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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