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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Los Altos Briefs

City offers live stream of council meetings on mobile devices

Los Altos officials announced last week that the city’s new website, launched in August, is now fully compatible with smartphones and tablets.

The announcement came after some residents noted their inability to view live-streaming city council meetings on certain devices since the debut of the city’s new website (losaltosca.gov). Specifically, they said they were unable to download a necessary plug-in onto their devices.

Granicus Inc. – contracted by the city to record, stream and archive council and Planning and Transportation Commission (PTC) meetings – previously required users to download a Microsoft Silverlight plug-in to watch streaming videos.

The Granicus system, according to city officials, was recently updated at no cost and now allows live streaming video using HTML 5. In addition to viewing archived and live online video on desktop and mobile devices, residents can view council and PTC meetings live on Comcast Channel 26.

Artistic bike rack policy approved

The city’s bicycle racks may be in for a new look after the Los Altos City Council last week approved a new artistic bike rack policy.

According to a city staff report, the council originally directed city staff to craft the policy in May following a recommendation by the city’s Public Arts Commission (PAC). The recommendation, according to the report, was intended “to encourage the installation of unique artistic bicycle racks” and is similar to a policy adopted by the city of Portland, Ore.

All artistic racks, the report noted, must be approved at the discretion of the city’s Public Works department through a revocable permit process. Anyone interested in pursuing the installation of an artistic bike rack may contact the city’s Public Works department via email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by calling 947-2780.

City Manager gets raise

The Los Altos City Council last week unanimously approved a $2,000 annual pay increase for City Manager Marcia Somers.

According to a staff report, the $2,000 increase will bump Somers’ annual base salary to $198,000.

Somers took over as city manager in April 2012, replacing the retiring Doug Schmitz. Prior to being hired, Somers spent 19 years in Danville – first serving as community services director and then assistant town manager from 2006.

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