Tue09302014

News

Meet the Santa Clara Valley Water District Board of Directors candidates

Meet the Santa Clara Valley Water District Board of Directors candidates

Two candidates have filed to run for the District 7 seat on the Santa Clara Valley Water District Board of Directors in the Nov. 4 election. The water district, established in 1929, oversees and protects water resources in Santa Clara County....

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Schools

New LAHS assistant principal focuses on school activities

New LAHS assistant principal focuses on school activities


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Suzanne Woolfolk, assistant principal at Los Altos High, teaches a leadership course for Associated Student Body leaders.

Suzanne Woolfolk – new assistant principal at Los Altos High School – said she is happy...

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Community

Petting zoo, car show highlight Chamber's annual Fall Festival

Petting zoo, car show highlight Chamber's annual Fall Festival


Courtesy of Los Altos Chamber of Commerce
The petting zoo is a highlight of the Los Altos Fall Festival. This year’s event is slated Oct. 4 and 5.

The Los Altos Chamber of Commerce has scheduled its 23rd annual Fall Festival 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oc...

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Sports

Burlingame bowls over Los Altos

Burlingame bowls over Los Altos


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Los Altos High halfback Sean Lanoza looks for running room against Burlingame in Saturday’s home opener.

The opening drive of Saturday’s game against Burlingame couldn’t have gone much better for the Los Altos High fo...

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Comment

Does Los Altos have a parking problem, or is it a symptom? : Other Voices

Yes, and yes. It appears that the downtown Los Altos parking problem is a symptom of the city’s “Sarah Winchester” approach to planning that instead of resulting in staircases to nowhere resulted in a hotel without parking required by code.(1)

From ...

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Special Sections

Los Altos landmark Four families later, Shoup House goes on the market

Los Altos landmark Four families later, Shoup House goes on the market


Courtesy of Matthew Anello
The Shoup House dining room, above, features original elements. The 100-year-old house on University Avenue earned a spot on the National Register of Historic Places, a nod to its legacy as the home of city founder Paul S...

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Business

Longtime banker readies for retirement

Longtime banker readies for retirement


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Joanne Kavalaris is retiring at the end of October after spending the past 25 years of her banking career in downtown Los Altos.

A longtime Los Altos banker is calling it a career in a few weeks.

Joanne Kavalaris, Bank o...

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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

VINCENT (TIM) MURPHY JR.

VINCENT (TIM) MURPHY JR.

July 27, 1953 – August 12, 2014

Native Los Altan died Medford, OR. Graduated Bellarmine Prep. Married Josephine Domino, 1950. Licensed Auto Mechanic, Private Pilot, skilled Computer Scientist. Tim “could fix anything”. Afflicted with cancer 2001. ...

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Travel

Taking a Turkey trek: Winging it during the World Cup

Taking a Turkey trek: Winging it during the World Cup


Rich Robertson/Special to the Town Crier
The sun sets over the Aegean Sea in Bodrum, Turkey, left.

Tours that whisk you from Istanbul to Bodrum in 11 days are as plentiful as souvenir hawkers in Turkey, but traveling from the Blue Mosque to Topkapi ...

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Stepping Out

Pear builds wonderful 'House'

Pear builds wonderful 'House'


J. Smith/Special to the Town Crier
Betsy Kruse Craig portrays Trish in the Pear Avenue Theatre production of “House,” which closes Oct. 5.

Mountain View’s Pear Avenue Theatre is staging an unusual theater-going experience – producing two plays...

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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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Passerelle plans to study Foothill Expressway intersections


Town Crier File photo
Passerelle Investment Co. will fund a study of two Foothill Expressway intersections to increase pedestrian and cyclist use.

Passerelle Investment Co.’s Community Development Director Brooke Ray Smith told the Town Crier that her company has issued a request for proposals (RFP) to study Foothill Expressway’s intersections at Main Street and Edith Avenue.

The goal of the study is to determine a way to make it safer to cross the Santa Clara County roadway, which could encourage more residents to walk or bike to downtown. Smith announced the company’s intentions at the Dec. 20 Los Altos City Council meeting and said she hopes to kick off the study sometime in January.

“We’re interested in seeing all the different ways people can come in and out of downtown without using a car,” said Smith, who added that the study will examine each intersection’s level of service, and Passerelle will likely schedule public meetings for input.

Smith, who expects to have the study completed by the end of March, said she crafted the RFP with feedback from city and county staff prior to its release. She plans to lean on their advice more as proposals roll in so that the study can meet the level of scrutiny typically required by public agencies.

“Anything that has to happen with the city and county has to run to their standards,” she said.

Smith described the study as “pretty open” in terms of approaches the company’s yet-to-be-hired consultant will take in examining the intersections. Among other things, Smith noted that the study aims to develop creative solutions that enhance pedestrian and bicyclist safety without the unintended consequence of negatively impacting an already congested expressway for motorists.

“The intent isn’t to be completely prescriptive about what this study has to say. … This should kind of be considered a living document,” Smith said. “We just want the best study possible. … What we wouldn’t want to have happen is to have the study go through, finish and have someone say that the consultant wasn’t effective.”

Smith noted that improving the intersections in the future could lead to “more feet on the street” in downtown Los Altos via increased pedestrian and bicycle traffic, among other benefits. In addition, Smith said the act of residents walking or riding bikes together into downtown builds community based on common interests.

According to Smith, the study’s findings could also lead to public-private partnerships to fund intersection improvements in the future and encourage alternative modes of transportation that could potentially alleviate another current concern for downtown visitors – the lack of parking.

“Everyone’s always talking about parking and congestion problems,” she said. “If we can get people within one-quarter of a mile to walk and bike to downtown, that would be a huge offset.”

For more information, visit passerelleinvestments.com.

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