Wed10222014

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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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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