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Peking Duck a menu for every taste WEEKEND | P.18 JUNE 3, 2011 VOLUME 19, NO. 20 650.964.6300 INSIDE: MOVIES | PAGE 21 Developer sues city for denying permits FORMER OWNER OF RAMSHACKLE APARTMENTS STILL OWES CITY $97,000 IN FEES By Daniel DeBolt T MICHELLE LE GETTING PUMPED AT THE PARK Trevor Kastrup, right, works out at Rengstorff Park Fitness Center before heading to work at the community pool. Kastrup says he likes the fitness center because it is free and close to work. Parks and Recreation Director David Muela said the $33,000 outdoor gym has been “extremely well received” by park users. Google’s growth spurt shapes city NEW LEASES, NEW CONSTRUCTION SET FOR COMING YEAR By Daniel DeBolt W ith the economy in recovery, Google is poised for a period of major growth in Mountain View and may soon leave its mark on the city’s landscape with several new buildings. Google has recently redoubled its efforts to build as much as 1.7 million square feet of new offices in Mountain View, including a new campus next to its headquarters that could be as large as 565,000 square feet. And a Google spokesperson says Google is still on track to begin construction in September 2013 on a 1.2-millionsquare-foot complex at a NASA Ames Research Center site that INSIDE overlooks the bay and includes company housing, a first for Silicon Valley, as well as child care and recreation facilities. Google now owns or leases at least 67 buildings in Mountain View, according to recent news and county tax assessor records from September. New acquisitions include the historic Pacific Press campus on Villa Street and a large Ellis Street office campus known as The Quad. Google is also rumored to be near a lease deal for the former Nokia campus on Fairchild Drive, but a Google spokesperson had no comment on the matter. Google has announced that 2011 will be its biggest hiring year ever, even bigger then 2007 when 6,000 employees were hired. “A significant number” of those employees will work in Google’s Mountain View offices, a spokesperson said. And Google’s expansion plans for following years indicate that the company doesn’t expect the growth to stop anytime soon. As early as late 2012, a spokesperson said, Google could begin construction on what is likely to be a landmark building. It is slated for the 18-acre, city-owned “Charleston East” lot between Google headquarters and Shoreline Boulevard. Plans have yet to be unveiled, but Google submitted concepSee GOOGLE, page 7 GOINGS ON 22 | MARKETPLACE 23 | REAL ESTATE 26 | VIEWPOINT 14 he former owner of a large Evandale Avenue apartment complex has filed a lawsuit against the city that claims he lost as much as $24.5 million when the city opposed his efforts to renovate the apartments after his redevelopment project fell through. Plaintiff Sal Teresi claims that city officials, under the direction of former city attorney Michael Martello, engaged in “capricious and arbitrary conduct” to make it expensive or difficult for him to renovate the 64 vacant apartments at 291 Evandale Avenue, which he was apparently forced to sell in the middle of the recession. As a result of the city’s actions, Teresi claims he lost $4.5 million in rent over five years and $16-20 million from appreciation of the building The issue took center stage in a City Council meeting in October of 2009. Teresi’s lawyer claimed then, as Teresi’s new lawyers claim now, that Teresi had a right to re-roof and repair the buildings without being subjected to a design review process, which the city officials told Teresi was required June of 2008. In the 2009 meeting, City Attorney Michael Martello disagreed, saying that “under their theory they could rebuild the entire complex” without any oversight. Teresi’s troubles began when he had lined up a buyer for the property just before the recession hit, and decided to vacate the apartments before closing escrow, according to the claim Teresi’s lawyers have filed in the case. The sale fell through when the real estate market tanked. After unsuccessfully trying to find another buyer, Teresi needed to rent the apartments again to pay his bills. Despite the city’s orders against it, Teresi got a roof permit through the city’s website and began work on the buildings in October of 2008, work which his lawyers say was within his rights as the project maintained a “conforming use” on the property. When the city discovered this, the project was halted, the buildings were red-tagged, and a fence was put up to keep workers out. While the buildings sat, Teresi claims unfinished roof work allowed rainwater to damage the interior of the apartments, causing the “rank odor” and mold that city officials later complained about. The City Council voted to uphold the denial of the roof permit to Teresi in 2009. Shortly after the complex was sold, the council approved detailed plans from Bay See LAWSUIT, page 6 Program boosts kids to college By Nick Veronin F or many local teens, college has always been a foregone conclusion. Yet, even in the heart of Silicon Valley, there are many kids who never dream of a higher education, even if they have the grades to get into top-tier schools. That doesn’t sit well with Michelle Reichert, director of the Mountain View Los Altos Community Scholars Program. “Kids are a community’s most valuable resources,” Reichert says. “It’s unfair that See SCHOLARS, page 9

Mountain View Voice 06.03.2011 - Section 1

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