Pedal pushers rejoice: Mountain View launches bike-share program

Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Electric bikes offered for rent through LimeBike await customers at Centennial Park in downtown Mountain View Thursday morning. The city last week launched a dockless bike-share pilot program featuring 400 electric bikes from Lime and 400 traditional pedal bikes from ofo.

On-demand, two-wheel transportation is no longer exclusively a Google Inc. employee perk. Now all Mountain View residents and visitors have ready access to a two-wheeled steed, thanks to a bike-share pilot program the city launched last week.

“It just gives them another option to hop on a bike without them having to worry about bringing their own bike along or making other arrangements,” said Dawn Cameron, Mountain View assistant public works director.

Here comes the sun: State OKs solar mandate

Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Solar panels affixed to a Los Altos Hills roof catch rays Friday. New updates to the state building code will mandate the use of solar panels in nearly all new home construction.

In a move energy industry leaders referred to as “historic,” “groundbreaking” and a “significant milestone,” California last week became the first state to require solar panels in nearly all new home construction.

The five-member California Energy Commission voted unanimously May 9 to approve the mandate, among updates to the state building code slated to take effect Jan. 1, 2020.

Transient arrested for harassing teller

A transient accused of harassing a teller at a downtown Los Altos bank last week faces a felony charge of making criminal threats.

Katana Moody, 29, walked into the Comerica Bank on Third Street at approximately 3 p.m. May 9 and threatened to slap a female employee, according to Los Altos Police Department Sgt. Ryan Burke. Moody then refused orders to leave the bank.

Public Arts Commission, council review new plan

The fight for art in Los Altos continued last week as the Public Arts Commission met with the city council to discuss its freshly tuned tactical arts plan.

After the council blasted the commission’s proposed Public Art Master Plan last year, commissioners decided to regroup and craft something more palatable – a tactical plan with events scheduled throughout the year. Events in the final plan included:

LA City Council majority green-lights fees aimed at easing affordable-housing crunch

A new affordable-housing impact fee could be making its way to Los Altos from the pockets of developers in an effort to help solve the Bay Area housing crisis.

At last week’s Los Altos City Council meeting, council members reviewed details of the proposed fee, which would be used to help develop or rehabilitate affordable housing. The fee was last discussed in 2017, a handful of months after a nexus study was conducted to establish the connection between development and the impact it has on affordable housing.

Los Altos parks protection effort challenged

An initiative proposed ostensibly to protect Los Altos parks and open space has left some residents wondering about hidden motivations. Meanwhile, the Los Altos City Council may consider a competing referendum later this month.

At issue is the Los Altos Protect Our Parks and Public Lands Initiative, launched last month. Los Altos resident Jim Jolly, who is leading the effort, said proponents have collected more than 2,900 signatures. They needed 1,943 signatures – 10 percent of registered voters – to qualify for the Nov. 6 ballot.

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