LACI Solicits Feedback On Park

Posted on November 11, 2016 by  
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laci-open-houseLos Altos Community Investments (LACI) held an open house Nov. 2 to discuss its planned green space on First Street in downtown Los Altos.  According to Sares Regis, a developer working with LACI, 95 people stopped by to share input with designers and developers, snack on appetizers and informally vote on amenities they would like to see in the proposed half-acre park.

LACI displayed several boards featuring different descriptors for the park, which would cover the portion of Parking Plaza North that fronts First Street. They asked questions such as “What character would you like to see in the Green?” or “What passive amenities would you like to see in the Green?” with options listed including “outdoor living room,” “dog walk” and “charging stations and Wi-Fi.”

“I used up all but six of my stickers,” said Los Altos resident Harry Guy of LACI’s voting process.  The retired engineer and lead emergency preparedness volunteer said he was excited to see that the plans promised something a bit more than a communal lawn. “We don’t need a bunch of grass, because of the water (consumption),” said Guy, expressing optimism that landscape architects Joni L. Janecki & Associates would install something more drought-resistant.

Janecki & Associates designed the David and Lucile Packard Foundation grounds and De Anza College’s sunken garden. Brad Jacobson of EHDD architects is another veteran of the Packard Foundation project on Second Street. “Residents were open to solutions that help solve problems the town has,” Jacobson said of the Packard Foundation headquarters. “There was a way to bridge the charm … with a forward-looking aesthetic. It’s not either-or. There’s a lot to learn from both sides.”

Many Los Altos residents were enthusiastic about the potential project. Ron Labetich, a longtime real estate broker in the city, dubbed the park a “great idea.” Maddy McBirney, a member of the Los Altos Public Arts Commission, said, it was “awesome.” McBirney added that she thought it was an inspiration for some of Los Altos’ other underused spaces, like the Veterans Community Plaza.

Others were skeptical about how the park could change the existing fabric of Los Altos. Guy, who was excited about the park itself, was more nervous about the changing face of First Street – particularly the old home now containing Bumble. It was the residence of Los Altos’ first librarian and is seen by many Los Altos residents, like Guy, as a landmark.


Kelly Snider, managing director of LACI, said all critiques are being taken into account. “We are just beginning to consider the size and design of the proposed park, the types of features and elements the park could contain, and the type of programming it could host,” she said. “We are seeking input from everyone in the community and are happy to meet and discuss with anyone who is interested.”


A $3 Million Donation For MS Services

Posted on November 4, 2016 by  
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ceo-cyndi-zagieboylo-visits-with-edward-dowdThe National Multiple Sclerosis Society has received what representatives called “a significant, life-changing gift” from Los Altos resident Edward Dowd.

The gift will establish the Edward M. Dowd Personal Advocate Program, enabling some patients to continue living in their homes.

The $3 million, multiyear gift is the largest gift the society has received from an individual donor.

The Edward M. Dowd Personal Advocate Program will expand the society’s services for people living with MS, ensuring that personalized case management is more consistently available to those needing in-depth support.

“For too many people living with MS, significant challenges and roadblocks prevent them from living their best lives,” society officials said in a statement. “Disease progression, employment issues, social and environmental factors, family issues and more can present seemingly insurmountable obstacles to receiving needed housing, home care, medical equipment, insurance and other support.”

Society officials said Dowd’s gift will expand its nationwide network of trained case managers who are knowledgeable about MS and who can provide the level of support necessary for navigating the challenges of MS.

“This life-changing gift will accelerate the collective and individual ability of people affected by MS to live their best lives – connected, solution-focused and resilient,” said society President and CEO Cyndi Zagieboylo. “People affected by MS have a supportive partner in the society to access the information and resources they need to make life choices and to find sustainable, life-changing solutions.”

Multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body. MS affects more than 2.3 million people worldwide.The National MS Society mobilizes people and resources so that anyone afflicted with the disease can have the best possible quality of life.

For more information, visit:


LAHS Hosts 11th Science & Tech Week

Posted on November 3, 2016 by  
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water-rocketFrom learning the mechanics behind vacuum technology to discovering the mysteries of bioluminescence in the deep seas, Los Altos High School students were exposed to varied science and technology careers last week.

The school hosted its 11th annual Science & Technology Week, inviting speakers from more than 30 industries and academia to discuss their career paths with students. Speakers covered such topics as public health research, oceanography, plant reproduction, machine intelligence, computer science and socially minded innovation.

The objectives of the week included demonstrating the value of math and science education to encourage students to take more associated classes during high school, raising awareness of the variety of related career opportunities, highlighting the diverse backgrounds of professionals and prompting students to think creatively and join the ranks of innovative thinkers for the next generation.

The week kicked off Oct. 19 with keynote speaker Robert Baertsch, vice president of software engineering at skyTran.

In a presentation open to the entire community, Baertsch addressed how today’s traffic congestion and climate change challenges can be resolved with innovative and green technology like Personal Rapid Transit systems. Baertsch is responsible for skyTran’s software control systems and helped develop the company’s magnetic levitation wing and motor controls.

Students last week could select from among more than 25 presentations covering topics such as medicine, psychology, biology, biochemistry, chemistry, environmental science, ecology, oceanography, engineering, art, math and space.

The Eagle Theater was packed during the Oct. 25 presentations, with students eager to hear the address by Jill Tarter, the Bernard M. Oliver Chair for SETI Research at the SETI Institute.

Her presentation – “Life Beyond Earth?” – examined the possibilities of living beings beyond what is known on Earth. Her presentation ended with thoughtful questions from students, such as, “Are there other universes?” “Do we all exist in a computer simulation?” “What will extraterrestrials look like?” and “Should we be trying transmit into space to discover?”

For more information on Science & Technology Week, visit:


Eagles Sweep Spartans In Finale

Posted on November 1, 2016 by  
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eagles-sweep-spartansIt’s going to take more than a few broken toes to prevent Los Altos High’s Kat Mumm from playing volleyball – especially against rival Mountain View in the league finale.

The outside hitter played through the pain to help the Eagles sweep the Spartans Thursday.

Mumm came up with a big kill in the marathon first set that tied the score at 22, snapping a three-point run by Mountain View. The teams traded points until 24-all, when Kaitlyn Wong’s ace put the Eagles up one. Payton Shaffer answered with a kill for the Spartans and teammate Lauren Price followed with one of her own to give Mountain View a 26-25 lead.

Lauren Limbach’s kill down the middle tied it, but the Spartans got the lead back when Los Altos’ next serve landed in the net.

Again on the verge of winning, Mountain View couldn’t put the set away. Los Altos rattled off three straight points, starting with a spike by Hanadi Nassif, who totaled a match-high 17 kills. Setter Kate Carlson followed with an ace and the Eagles won when the Spartans’ next kill attempt went wide.

Los Altos led for most of the second set – by as many as six points – before Mountain View tied it at 17 on Aidan O’Leary’s kill. But the Eagles scored six of the next eight points (two on Limbach kills) to go up 23-19.

Eleonore Johansen, whose nine kills tied Shaffer for the team high, then scored off a block. That’s as close as the Spartans got. Mumm’s back-row kill made it 24-20 and after Los Altos was called for an illegal touch, Mountain View returned the favor to end the set.

The Spartans refused to surrender, however. They built a 15-9 advantage in the third set behind four points by Shaffer and stellar setting from her big sister Sam.

It wasn’t enough to hold off the resilient Eagles. They went on a 12-4 run to take the lead. Nassif contributed three kills – highlighted by a cross-court blast – along with an ace during that span.

Host Mountain View regrouped to tie the set at 23, but Limbach’s block for a point and a Spartan shot that went long ended it.


A Spectacular View Home in San Jose

Posted on November 1, 2016 by  
Filed under Sold Properties · Tagged:

San Jose Skyline

3020 Three Springs Rd, San Jose CA 95140
Listed at $1,395,000 / Sold at $1,360,000
Gated property above Silicon Valley
4 Beds / 2.5 Baths / Home: 4,076 sqft / Lot: 3.98 acres +/-
Single Family Detached
Representing: Seller