Mon09222014

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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Open Space District approves vision plan, considers bond measure


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District selected Rancho San Antonio Open Space Preserve as one of 25 priority projects in its long-term vision plan.

Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District officials propose improvements to Rancho San Antonio Open Space Preserve in their long-term vision plan.

At the conclusion of a nearly 10-month vision planning process, the district prioritized projects for the next 40 years based on scientific analysis and public input gathered via five public meetings and its online website.

The district narrowed the list of 73 potential projects into 25 priority projects for implementation in the “nearer-term,” defined by officials as the next 20 years or sooner. Projects range from campground and trail improvements to habitat conservation and watershed protection.

To qualify for inclusion on the tier-one priority list, a project needed public support at meetings and online, a high rating from members of the Community Advisory Committee and relevance to the goals of the vision plan.

After a final review last week, board members approved 23 tier-one projects in addition to two others that merited inclusion because of public interest and the large number of visitors that use the open spaces.

Improvements to Rancho San Antonio, the district’s most active preserve with nearly 13,000 visitors per day, made the priority project list. Enhancements at the preserve may include adding a visitors’ center, upgrading Deer Hollow Farm, extending bike trails, installing a bike-share station and coordinating bus service to reduce parking demands.

“We did a lot of upfront planning as to be as inclusive and open as possible,” said Curt Riffle, a Los Altos resident who represents Ward 4 on the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District board.

According to district officials, approximately 5 percent of all meeting participants and 10 percent of all online participants reside in Los Altos.

Riffle said local residents should be “pretty darn happy with what we’ve done.” In the 41 years since voters created the district to preserve open space, the district has acquired 62,000 acres of land. With less than 50 percent of district land currently open to the public, Riffle said the vision plan would make more open space accessible.

Now that the vision plan is approved, the board will evaluate costs for priority projects and examine supplemental funding options, such as a bond. According to a district estimate, the top 25 projects on the priority list could cost approximately $300 million.

“We think the public might be willing to pay a little more,” said Riffle of a bond measure that would generate funds to expedite the projects.

Board members will decide at their Feb. 26 meeting whether to place a General Obligation Bond on the June 2014 ballot.

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