Palo Alto Weekly

News - September 17, 2010

City View

A round-up of Palo Alto government action this week

City Council (Sept. 13)

Emergency preparedness: The council heard a presentation and held a study session on the city's emergency preparedness. Action: None

High-speed rail: The council received a staff report on California's proposed high-speed rail project and heard a presentation from Caltrain about Caltrain's request that the California High-Speed Rail Authority "refocus" its environmental review for the project. Action: None

Policy and Services Committee (Sept. 14)

Project Safety Net: The committee discussed Project Safety Net, the community collaboration for youth well being, and directed staff to prepare a report detailing the city's involvement in the effort. The report's recommendations will include adopting an official suicide-prevention policy, selecting a City Council member to serve as youth liaison, and holding additional joint sessions between the City Council and the Youth Council. Yes: Unanimous

Board of Education (Sept. 14)

Board goals: The Board of Education approved its list of "focused goals" for the 2010-11 school year, including efforts to "improve student connectedness" and increase the percentage of graduates who complete requirements for admission to the University of California and the California State University system. Yes: Unanimous

Public Art Commission (Sept. 15)

Mitchell Park Library: The commission conditionally approved Mark Verlander as artist for a teen-mural project at the Mitchell Park site. The commission also approved a proposal for project involving four to five steel animal sculptures to be placed outside the library. Yes: Acebo-Davis, Coleman, Richter, Smit Absent: Usich

Filaree sculpture: The commission voted to move the Filaree sculpture from its present location due to obstructed view. Yes: Acebo-Davis, Coleman, Smit Absent: Usich Recused: Richter

Collection maintenance: The commission approved a request for $2,000 for an Art Center exhibition crew to work on installations and repairs. Yes: Acebo-Davis, Coleman, Richter, Smit Absent: Usich

Other business: The commission agreed to wait until its next meeting to appoint a new chair and vice chair. Six potential commission candidates will interview with the City Council to fill two open committee slots.

Historic Resources Board (Sept. 15)

Edgewood Plaza: The board commented on the historic aspects of Edgewood Plaza and discussed the board's scope in reviewing the project at 2080 Channing Ave. The board asked the project team to provide more details about how they plan to move historically significant structures on the site. Action: None

High-Speed Rail Committee (Sept. 15)

Rail funding: The committee voted to recommend sending a letter to state officials requesting that funding be withheld from the high-speed rail project. Yes: Klein, Shepherd, Price No: Burt

Alternatives: The City Council committee agreed to oppose elevated and at-grade track alternatives for the Peninsula segment of high-speed rail; to remain open to the open-trench alternative; and to ask the rail authority to revaluate a covered-trench alternative. Yes: Unanimous

Planning and Transportation Commission (Sept. 15)

Edgewood Plaza: The commission considered initiating an amendment to the planned community zone at 2080 Channing Ave., a project that includes a shopping center and 10 homes. The commission agreed to revisit the zoning amendment at a later date. Yes: Unanimous

610 Los Trancos Road: The commission recommended City Council approve the new "sport court" roof structure, contingent upon the installation of vegetative. Yes: Unanimous

Rail line: The commission tabled a Comprehensive Plan amendment regarding aerial railroad structures. Opponents felt the commission should respond proactively. Proponents felt the Comprehensive Plan was not intended to outline project-level specifications.

Yes: Garber, Lippert, Martinez, Tanaka, Tuma No: Fineberg, Keller

Architectural Review Board (Sept. 16)

797 Matadero: The board approved a proposal by Chamberlain Group to construct four new homes on four parcels at 797 Matadero. Yes: Unanimous

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