Pacific Gas & Electric will look for an alternate location for an easement the company was seeking to build at Cubberley Community Center in Palo Alto — a victory for the school district, which had vehemently opposed the project.
Palo Alto Unified Superintendent Don Austin announced they had resolved negotiations after meeting with PG&E representatives on Friday.
"Ultimately, PG&E listened to our position and changed course in the interest of our district and those served at Cubberley," he said.
PG&E had threatened to file an eminent domain case against the school district after stalled talks over the project, which would have included a 1,680-square-foot underground easement, an 18,000-square-foot testing easement and a temporary 6,000-square-foot construction easement to upgrade a natural gas pipeline that runs under Middlefield Road. The pipeline runs for 23 miles from Milpitas to Crystal Springs, and the district had pressed PG&E to find a less disruptive place for the upgrade.
In a statement, PG&E Vice President of Gas Transmission Distribution Construction Peter Kenny said: "After gaining a better understanding of the Palo Alto Unified School District perspective, we reached mutual agreement to seek an alternative location for PG&E's gas transmission pipeline inspection project. We appreciate their partnership and look forward to continued collaboration in the future."
Palo Alto Unified owns a majority of the 35-acre center, some of which is leased to the city of Palo Alto. The school district is hosting some special education students and teachers at the site.
The district launched about a week ago a "Save Cubberley" campaign, parking school buses in the locations of the easements, hanging banners and gathering 3,500 signatures against the project.
Austin said the district will take everything down from Cubberley and "return our thoughts to getting students back to school."