T H E H O M E TOW N N E W S PA P E R F O R M E N L O PA R K , AT H E R TO N , P O R TO L A VA L L E Y A N D WO O D S I D E
SEPTEMBER 19, 2012
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vision Woodside farm extends its offerings to the community
See page 5
Info Menlo Inside this issue
ATHERTON Grand estate with three levels all above ground on a private, 1.6+/- acre ﬂag lot. Rooms are spacious and ﬁlled with natural light. 5 bedroom suites, including master suite on the second ﬂoor. Third ﬂoor is ideal for recreation/ﬁtness. Resort like grounds include a pool, spa, tennis court, sweeping terraces, and a studio cabana. 2 separate garages with room for 10 cars. Las Lomitas Schools. $10,888,000
ATHERTON Just past the fairy ring entrance, this gorgeous, completely redone house has it all. Gourmet chef’s kitchen, Viking appliances, wine room, butler’s pantry, and formal dining room. Enormous master suite with his and hers walk in closets, duel sinks, plus a separate make up counter. Sunny pool, outdoor kitchen, huge yard, sport court, guest house, and a 3 car garage. $4,399,000
PORTOLA VALLEY Magical .53+/- acre setting with sweeping views of Windy Hill. This is an amazing property with an updated, contemporary 4bd home. 2830+/- sf of living space on a level 1/2 +/- acre. The ﬂoor plan is open and ﬂowing with walls of windows framing the gardens and views. Excellent location with top ranked Portola Valley schools.
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Photo by Michelle Le/The Almanac
Local Joseph Derrough takes a moment to look up while reading a book at Sharon Park.
Sharon Park removed from list of affordable housing sites By Sandy Brundage and Dave Boyce Almanac Staff Writers
s expected, the six people overseeing Menlo Parkâ€™s hunt for new housing sites voted to drop a neighborhood park from the list on Wednesday night. The 2.67 acres of the 10-acre Sharon Park are no longer under consideration as a possible location for affordable senior housing. But dropping that site meant adding others to the list. In this case, the Housing Element Update Steering Committee restored two areas previously discarded, both on Sand Hill Road â€” the Hewlett Foundation site and a 1.7-acre parcel near I-280 and the Sharon Heights Golf and Country Club. Sharon Heights residents flooded the City Council with hundreds of emails demanding that the park be left alone and that affordable housing be placed elsewhere in the city. After City Attorney Bill McClure determined that rezoning the park would be a long, expensive process, the steer-
ing committee agreed. Other areas, such as the Linfield Oaks neighborhood, are also starting to protest being on the list. JoAnne Goldberg wrote this to the council, echoing sentiments expressed by several neighbors: â€œIt is pretty clear that my neighborhood, Linfield Oaks, remains a target of your plans. This is especially unfortunate
Sharon Heights residents flooded the city with emails. as Linfield Oaks has already been the site of recent housing developments and has borne the brunt of the additional traffic and other negative impacts. â€œGreen space that neighbors used to enjoy has vanished forever. We have more residents but no more amenities. Moreover, our neighborhood will be profoundly affected by upcoming changes in intensity to the downtown/El Camino corridor.â€? Menlo Park has no choice about adding enough high-den-
sity housing zones to accommodate space for 1,000 units as part of a lawsuit settlement over its non-compliance with state law. While the city is not required to actually build the units, it must provide incentives for developers to do so, according to the settlement approved on May 22. State law requires cities to assess and plan to meet their fair share of regional housing needs, which includes affordable housing, every seven years. Menlo Park hasnâ€™t met the state requirements since 1992, but now only has until Oct. 31 to send a draft update to the stateâ€™s Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD). â€œEach city and county has a responsibility to provide, in their housing element, adequate sites to provide affordable housing to people who live there,â€? HCD spokesman Colin Parent told the Almanac. Itâ€™s not a requirement that cities actually build enough affordable housing. â€œItâ€™s sort of a supply side approach,â€? he said. Once the See HOUSING, page 6
JOHN GRADUATED WITH A BACHELOR OF ACTING FROM SOUTHERN METHODIST UNIVERSITY AND A MASTERS IN FINE ARTS FROM AMERICAN CONSERVATORY THEATRE. Heâ€™s â€œoverjoyedâ€? when students achieve something they didnâ€™t believe was possible and also believes that the performing arts teach students lifelong skills that are fundamental to developing a â€œwholeâ€? person. John teaches acting, directing, and playwriting to middle and high school students at the introductory and advanced levels. He taught for 9 years with ACTâ€™s Young Conservatory and worked extensively as a guest artist, directing, and playwriting. As a member of the Prioryâ€™s on-campus faculty, when John isnâ€™t teaching, he loves to spend time with his family. ONE OF THE MANY REASONS TO SEND YOUR CHILD TO: Woodside Prior y School Admissions Office 302 Portola Road, Portola Valley, CA 94028 650/851-8223 â– www.PrioryCa.org
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THE ALMANAC (ISSN 1097-3095 and USPS 459370) is published every Wednesday by Embarcadero Media, 3525 Alameda de las Pulgas, Menlo Park, CA 940256558. Periodicals Postage Paid at Menlo Park, CA and at additional mailing offices. Adjudicated a newspaper of general circulation for San Mateo County, The Almanac is delivered free to homes in Menlo Park, Atherton, Portola Valley and Woodside. Subscriptions for $60 per year or $100 per 2 years are welcome. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to the Almanac, 3525 Alameda de las Pulgas, Menlo Park, CA 94025-6558. Copyright ÂŠ2012 by Embarcadero Media, All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited.
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Saturday. Nov. 10th, 2012 at 10 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 28th, 2012 at 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 8th, 2012 at 10 a.m For information and to R.S.V.P. contact Admissions at 650.851.8223
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Local News M
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Photo by Michelle Le/The Almanac
Carolyn Hoffman, left, pastry chef at Spruce restaurant in San Francisco, and Danie Pirelli pick shelling peas at the SMIP Ranch farm in the hills above Woodside.
growing a VISION WOODSIDE FARM E X TENDS ITS OFFERINGS TO THE COMMUNIT Y
By Renee Batti Almanac News Editor
asically, the farm is every chef ’s dream,” Mark Sullivan says as he and a crew of volunteers set out one recent morning in a caravan from the Village Pub in Woodside for the farm about which he rhapsodizes. The volunteers were staff members of the Pub and its sisters — restaurants of the Bacchus Management Group for which Mr. Sullivan is executive chef and a founding partner. There were other chefs in the group, and servers, sommeliers, bartenders and managers. The farm they were heading to, in the hills above Woodside, has been providing the fresh produce served at the Village Pub and other Bacchus restaurants, including Spruce in San Francisco, for years. Arriving at the five-acre farm at the SMIP Ranch, owned for many years by the Djerassi family, the volunteer har-
vesters could feast their eyes on row after what it would be if picked days or weeks row of lettuces, cucumbers, cauliflower, before, he says. “It tastes like candy — the shelling peas, beets, squash, melons and sugar is so present.” edible flowers, all thriving and enticing After more than 10 years of growing under a hot morning sun. food for Bacchus’ local restaurants, the It’s easy to underfarm has begun offering its harvest to stand the chef ’s the community as dream metaphor: a CSA — a com‘Basically, the munity supported Mr. Sullivan says the people behind the agriculture project. farm is every menus and meals at Under the program, chef’s dream.’ locals can pay $28 Bacchus restaurants are able to have a to pick up a box MARK SULLIVAN relationship with of freshly picked the farmers — and produce every week as volunteers, with the farm itself — and from Bacchus restaurants, which on the have a say in what produce is grown. Peninsula include Mayfield Bakery & Equally important, chefs are able to Cafe in Palo Alto as well as the Pub. prepare their meals with the freshest of produce, sustainably grown, rather than On the farm The partnership between the Bacchus fruits and vegetables that might have aged in cold storage for weeks. “If I pick a tur- group and the SMIP farm — SMIP is an nip that morning for a meal that evening, acronym for “sic manebimus in pace,” or the flavor profile is so different” from “thus we will remain in peace — began
about 10 years ago. That’s when Mr. Sullivan and Bacchus co-partner Tim Stannard started kicking around an idea about having a closer connection with the sources of food served at the Village Pub, which at the time was the only restaurant they owned and operated. “We asked ourselves, ‘How would this be possible? How could we create a farm?’ We had to start with finding a person with the same vision,” Mr. Sullivan explains. Enter Dale Djerassi, who lives on the property that had been used as a shorthorn cattle ranch. “Dale had the same vision,” Mr. Sullivan says. “Talking to him about the idea, he said, ‘By the way, I have 1,600 acres,’” some of which was flat and fertile, he recalls. “And, he believes in doing the right thing to shepherd the land.” Mr. Djerassi says that he, Kristi Spierling, and Jesse Alper embraced the idea of See WOODSIDE FARM, page 8
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Early morning burglary interrupted,
he last thing anyone wants to stumble upon in their home is a stranger. That was, however, the sight greeting a Menlo Park woman early one Wednesday morning. The 42-year-old resident called for help upon seeing a man wandering through her house; heâ€™d apparently crept in through an unlocked door in the garage. She yelled, the man fled, and police arrived around 4:23 a.m. A yard-to-yard search along the 1200 block of Carlton Avenue that included a police dog failed to find the suspect, although it did locate a small motor bike the man had pushed from the garage during the Sept. 12 encounter. Heâ€™s described as approximately 5 feet 7 inches tall, of medium build, wearing a black hoodie that obscured his face, and light pants. Anyone with information on this case may call police at 330-6300 or the anonymous tip line at 330-6395.
Menlo Park teen attacked for bike Two teenagers have been arrested for attacking a 15-year-old boy and stealing his bike at a local park, Menlo Park police said. The victim was riding his Schwinn Road bicycle at Bedwell Bayfront Park shortly before 6 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 11, when two 15-year-old boys pushed him to HOUSING continued from page 3
zoning part is complete, there is state financing assistance and market pressures. If a city has no housing element or the element is declared invalid, and if someone sues â€” as happened with Menlo Park â€” the court can assume the local governmentâ€™s authority and make zoning decisions, as defined in the statute. â€œThatâ€™s the primary deterrent,â€? Mr. Parent said. In Menlo Parkâ€™s case, that meant zoning for 30 houses per acre and the threat of courtorder restrictions on building permits and shorter windows of time for development projects. Mr. Parent explained that if the HCD signs off on a housing element, thatâ€™s â€œoften very persuasive,â€? but the court makes the final decision. When HCD signs off, the primary effect is that the city is able to apply for state financing.