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OUR NEIGHBORHOODS ATHERTON | MENLO PARK | PORTOL A VALLEY | WOODSIDE

MENLO PARK

ATHERTON

PORTOLA VALLEY

WOODSIDE

P R O F I L E S, M A P S A N D V I TA L FA C T S O F F E AT U R E D N E I G H B O R H O O D S I N T H E C O M M U N I T Y W W W. T H E A L M A N A C O N L I N E . C O M


Successfully Representing Sellers & Buyers for over 25 years

Woodside • Menlo Park Portola Vallely • Atherton • Palo Alto Los Altos Hills • Redwood City • Los Altos I’d like to give a special thanks all of my clients for allowing me to help them with their real estate needs this year. Best wishes for this Holiday Season and in the New Year!

SEAN FOLEY YOUR ADVOCATE IN EVERY TRANSACTION!

Homes, Estates & Investment Properties Direct: 650-329-6631 | Cell: 650-207-6005 sfoley@cbnorcal.com

NEIGHBORHOODS

Thanks for helping me once again achieve the distinction of being one of Coldwell Banker’s top agents in the Bay Area as well as Northern California.

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Representing over 415 buyers & sellers in Menlo Park & Atherton since 1999. Superior real estate representation for those who expect only the very best. W W W.TOM L E M I E U X .C OM

SOLD by Tom LeMieux NEIGHBORHOODS

Map data Š2011 Google

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650 329 6645 tom@tomlemieux.com

tomlemieux.com DRE# 01066910

Coldwell Banker Top 1% Internationally Top 100 Nationally, Wall Street Journal, 2012


OUR NEIGHBORHOODS ATHERTON | MENLO PARK | PORTOLA VALLEY | WOODSIDE

INDEX ATHERTON .....................7 Lindenwood .......................12 Lloyden Park ......................14 West of Alameda ...............16 Atherton Oaks ..................18 West Atherton .................. 20

MENLO PARK ...............23

S

STAFF

tagecoaches brought settlers to the Midpeninsula, then trains, buses, planes and automobiles. Burgeoning towns incorporated, with the 1920s and period after World War II seeing the establishment of the communities we know today as Menlo Park, Atherton, Portola Valley and Woodside. Neighborhoods are extensions of our homes, in a way. Beyond the living room, the characters of the people who make up a place inform our daily life experience. We can retreat or engage, celebrate or stroll in reverie. These pages are filled with stories told by people who inhabit a handful of neighborhoods. Some of their views are personal, from recollections about Halloween gatherings to opinions about high-speed rail and schools. What drew residents to settle into their neighborhood?

Publisher: Tom Gibboney Editor: Eric Van Susteren Art director: Shannon Corey Researchers: Sarah Trauben, Lisa Kellman Map designer: Scott Peterson

Eric Van Susteren, Editor evansusteren@paweekly.com

Vice President Sales and Marketing: Tom Zahiralis Sales representatives: Connie Jo Cotton, Neal Fine, Rosemary Lewkowitz, Carolyn Oliver, Irene Schwartz Home-sales data: Courtesy J. Robert Taylor, Taylor Properties

Additional copies of The Almanac Neighborhoods, as well as companion publications — Palo Alto Neighborhoods and Mountain View/Los Altos Neighborhoods — are available at the Almanac for $5 each. Palo Alto and Mountain View Neighborhoods are available at the Palo Alto Weekly, 450 Cambridge Ave. for $5 each. All three publications are available online at www.almanacnews.com/real_estate. Copyright ©2013 by Embarcadero Media. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited.

PORTOLA VALLEY........53 Brookside ......................... 54 Central Portola Valley ........ 56 Ladera .............................. 58 Portola Valley Ranch ......... 60

WOODSIDE ..................67 Kings Mountain................. 68 Skywood/ Woodside Heights ............. 70 Woodside Glens/ Woodside Hills .................. 72 ON THE COVER: There were 61 single-family homes like this one sold in Central Menlo Park in 2012. Photos by Michelle Le.

NEIGHBORHOODS

The Almanac 450 Cambridge Ave Palo Alto, CA 94306 650-854-2626 www.TheAlmanacOnline.com

What makes each neighborhood come alive? From local hangouts to book groups, races, parks and gatherings, Almanac Neighborhoods offers a sampling of what residents say makes their place the best. A fact box for each neighborhood provides information about schools, fire stations, shopping and homes and maps of each city or town show the location of each neighborhood. Want to know more? You can download neighborhood maps online or learn about other neighborhoods not in this book by visiting www.almanacnews.com/real_ estate. Other neighborhoods, as well as neighborhoods in Palo Alto and Mountain View, are profiled online.

Allied Arts / Stanford Park ..24 Fair Oaks .......................... 28 Central Menlo Park ........... 30 Downtown Menlo Park ..... 32 Felton Gables .................... 34 Linfield Oaks ..................... 36 Menlo Oaks ...................... 40 Sharon Heights ................. 42 South of Seminary/ Vintage Oaks .................... 44 Suburban Park/ Belle Haven ....................... 46 The Willows ...................... 49 University Heights ............. 50

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NEIGHBORHOODS


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FACTS TOWN OPERATING AND CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS BUDGET: $10.28 MILLION POPULATION (2011): 6,914

280

HOUSEHOLDS (2009): 2,479 SINGLE-FAMILY HOUSING (2000): 99 PERCENT MEDIAN HOME PRICE: $3,305,000 MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOME (2005-09): $185,000

exceptions — primarily former San Mateo County streets acquired through annexation — that remains the rule today. A few of the early homes remain, including three built by Timothy Hopkins for his daughters between 1901 and 1908 on Parkwood Drive, Altree Court and Lowery Drive.

NEIGHBORHOODS

T

he privacy gained by lots of at least one acre, winding streets with mature trees, gracious mansions set well back from the curbless streets — this is Atherton today. Once part of a Spanish rancho, the town was incorporated in 1923. One of its first rules was to assure that lots would not be subdivided into parcels smaller than an acre. With a few

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L I EBSCH

I N DY

For A Stress Free Real Estate Transaction Contact me! “It was the most pleasant, time saving, professional, and stress-free large financial transaction we have ever completed! Cindy was “off the charts” wonderful! Not only did Cindy do what she said she was going to do, she also did much more than that. All along, Cindy made sure that my wife and I were communicated to quickly and accurately. There was never anything left for chance. We were both amazed at the level of service Cindy gave us, knowing that she had other listings she was working on, and other things going on that were probably more pressing than our issues! We have highly recommended Cindy to anyone that is talking real estate!” S and L Lohmann “Cindy is tenacious, a skillful negotiator, easy to work with and fun, smart, very knowledgeable and savvy. She has that special touch in everything that she does.” Tony and Renee - Woodside

NEIGHBORHOODS

Atherton • Los Altos • Menlo Park Palo Alto • Woodside

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C

L

I N DY I E B SC H 650-591-7473

cindy.liebsch@cbnorcal.com • www.propertiesbythebay.com DRE#01324217


Why Julie when it comes to real estate? Palo Alto, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Mountain View, Menlo Park, Atherton area specialist Over 20 years experience in real estate investment, construction and development Mid-Peninsula resident for over 24 years Detailed knowledge of the neighborhoods and well connected with the community Access to top-notched professionals in the industry Consistent top producing agent Highly educated and exceptionally skillful in every aspect of her profession, highly respected by her peers. Wonderful marketer & tactful negotiator Resourceful, diligent, loyal and truthful to her clients She has her team ready to go and we handle all the details! Direct communication with you and keeps you updated She actively works for you! Over 80% of Julie's businesses are from referrals and repeated clients as a result of her unsurpassed level of service and unmatched dedication Fluent in Mandarin Chinese, Julie’s clients got an edge locally and globally B.S. Engineering, UC Berkeley MBA, Cal State University

Full Listing Service

Julie Tsai Law Broker Associate, CRS, SRES, MBA Top agent of the nation, according to Wall Street Journal rankings DRE # 01339682 Cell Phone: (650) 799-8888 Email: julie@julietsailaw.com

www.JulieTsaiLaw.com

NEIGHBORHOODS

Market analysis & strategic market planning Assist y ou preparing your property for sale: Julie has access to reliable inspectors, contractors, painters, landscapers, professional stagers, etc. Help you complete necessary paperwork & disclosures Professional designed open house flyer & marketing materials Direct mailing to target groups Multiple Listing Services Open house ad on local newspaper Open houses & broker tour Screening f or qualified buyers Follow up with agents and buyers F acilitate showings and offer presentation Contr act negotiations Escrow coordination and sign off

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MENLO PARK

MENLO PARK

MENLO PARK

MENLO PARK

REPRESENTING

NEIGHBORHOODS

Buyers and Sellers to achieve their real estate goals

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PALO ALTO

PALO ALTO

PALO ALTO

MOUNTAIN VIEW

brigid@vanrandall.com www.vanrandall.com

(650) 566-5348- ofямБce (408) 221-3175 - cell DRE# 01139489

LOS ALTOS


Savides Real Estate is a boutique residential real estate company providing high quality personalized service to buyers and sellers of properties in Menlo Park, Atherton, Palo Alto, Portola Valley, Woodside, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, and surrounding areas. STEPHANIE SAVIDES has lived in the Menlo Park/Palo Alto area her entire life and has many local connections: U Grew up in Los Altos//Los Altos Hills U Graduate of Stanford University and Gunn High School in Palo Alto U 10 years prior experience as a Real Estate/Contracts Attorney U Central Menlo Park Homeowner U Parent of children at Hillview Middle School in Menlo Park and Menlo-Atherton High School

2012 SALES

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*"Ê/"ÊUÊfÎ]ÎÈn]äää Represented Seller

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*"Ê/"ÊUÊfÎ]nÈä]äää Represented Buyer

*",/"Ê6 9ÊUÊf£]È£ä]äää Represented Seller

STEPHANIE SAVIDES Owner/Broker Attorney

650-464-3581

ALUMNI

 "Ê*,ÊUÊfÓ]Îää]äää Represented Buyer

DRE# 01177101

NEIGHBORHOODS

*",/"Ê6 9ÊUÊf£]xÇä]äää Represented Buyer

www.SavidesRealEstate.com stephanie.savides@gmail.com

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LINDENWOOD

S

NEIGHBORHOODS

till retaining its private-estate atmosphere from the days when the “Silver King of the Comstock Lode,” James C. Flood, lived there on 600 acres, Lindenwood’s twisting lanes and roads are accessible via two impressive gates on Middlefield Road and one on Frederick Avenue. Flood built Linden Towers, a 44-room, three story home that was considered among the most opulent on the Peninsula. He adorned his 1878 estate house with towers, gables and cupolas and furnished with exotic treasures from around the world. Fittingly, all the plumbing fixtures were sterling silver. Between 1937 and 1955, the area now known as Lindenwood was developed after the death of Flood’s son. But Flood’s presence still presides over the neighborhood. Many of the artifacts from the estate, which was torn down in 1934 — fountains, statues, street lights — still exist, in some cases, on private properties. Lindenwood has retained its private estate atmosphere because it is totally enclosed. Lindenwood’s lanes, avenues and roads take a winding course. James Avenue, the “Main Street,” is one of its few straight streets. “A visitor coming from either of our

12

FACTS

two entrances is likely to get lost unless they know where they are going,” board member Phillip Lively noted, adding that the meandering roads contribute to the overall safety of the tricky-to-navigate neighborhood. Most parcels are just under one acre and may not be subdivided by city code, which contributes to Lindenwood’s low population density. The lush foliage-lined neighborhood draws out strollers and cyclists that appreciate the wide streets” low rate of destination-driven traffic. Despite the private atmosphere, organized events such as block parties draw residents together. The Lindenwood Homes Association is active in the neighborhood, planning social events as well as taking care of such things as repairing the gates and maintaining the plantings in the public areas, according to Lively. Mr. Lively estimates 63 percent of the 470 homes belong to the association, each paying $40 annual membership dues. Lindenwood is known as a tight-knit community, according to Mr. Lively. “We’re a very ‘neighborly” neighborhood,” he says. — Susan Golovin

CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: The Playschool, Holbrook-Palmer Park, 150 Watkins Ave., Atherton FIRE STATION: 300 Middlefield Road, Menlo Park LOCATION: Marsh Road, Ringwood Avenue, Bay Road and Middlefield Road NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION: Marion Oster, 650-325-0714 PARK: Holbrook-Palmer Park, 150 Watkins Ave., Atherton PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Menlo Park City Elementary School District — Laurel School, 95 Edge Road, Atherton; Encinal School, 195 Encinal Ave., Menlo Park; Hillview Middle School, 1100 Elder Ave., Menlo Park Sequoia Union High School District — Menlo Atherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Downtown Menlo Park MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $3,100,0900 ($1,825,000-$6,100,000) HOMES SOLD: 11


SOLD [fÆeTge[`WeeSegegS^ SOLD

COWPER STREET PALO ALTO REPRESENTED THE SELLER

SOLD

SOLD

REPRESENTED THE BUYER

POSSUM LANE PORTOLA VALLEY

REPRESENTED THE SELLER

SOLD

HAWTHORNE AVENUE MENLO PARK

REPRESENTED THE BUYER

SOLD

REPRESENTED THE BUYER

SOLD

ARBOR ROAD MENLO PARK

REPRESENTED THE SELLER

SOLD

GOLDEN OAK PORTOLA VALLEY

SOLD

BYRON STREET PALO ALTO

REPRESENTED THE BUYER

SANTA CRUZ AVENUE MENLO PARK

REPRESENTED THE SELLER

REPRESENTED THE BUYER

SOLD

SOLD

CREEK ROAD MENLO PARK

WINDSOR WAY MENLO PARK

REPRESENTED THE SELLER

SOLD

REPRESENTED THE BUYER

SOLD

OAK KNOLL LANE MENLO PARK

SOLD

MONTEREY DUNES CASTROVILLE

REPRESENTED THE BUYER

HERMOSA WAY MENLO PARK

REPRESENTED THE BUYER

SOLD

WISTERIA LANE PALO ALTO

REPRESENTED THE SELLER

REPRESENTED THE BUYER

monicacormanbroker DRE #01111473

mcorman@apr.com

650.543.1164 monicacorman.com

NEIGHBORHOODS

SERVING YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD MENLO PARK ATHERTON PALO ALTO STANFORD WOODSIDE PORTOLA VALLEY LOS ALTOS LOS ALTOS HILLS

SOLD

SANTA CRUZ AVENUE MENLO PARK

RAMOSO ROAD PORTOLA VALLEY

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LLOYDEN PARK

C

NEIGHBORHOODS

harming, friendly, and quaint — that’s how Michelle Hayes describes Lloyden Park. The area was once owned by Joseph B. Coryell, who bought his home in 1902 for $30,000. His estate was subdivided in 1927, and most of the development took place in the 1940s, dividing the land into mostly one-third acre lots. Home styles run the gamut from a Streamlined Moderne built for the 1939 World’s Fair, to traditional, complete with picket fence. Tear-downs are rare in this part of town, but remodeling is common. There is less of a rural and a more neighborhood feel to Lloyden Park. The neighborhood is zoned for smaller lots than the rest of Atherton. Sidewalks and underground utilities, eschewed elsewhere in Atherton, encourage walking and socializing. “It’s not what people normally think of Atherton. It’s a family neighborhood,” David Barca says. He moved to the neighborhood in 1982, to a home his grandparents built in 1953. Most of the residents send their children to private schools. Lloyden Park is part of the Redwood City school system, whereas the rest of Atherton has access to the Menlo Park school system. When he moved to the neighborhood with his wife and two small children, they

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FACTS FIRE STATION: 32 Almendral Ave., Atherton

were not planning to stay long because of the schools. But Mr. Barca and his wife lived the neighborhood so much that they stayed and sent their kids to private school, he says. Michelle Hayes and her husband Steve were well aware of the discrepancy when they moved to Lloyden Park 26 years ago. However, they wanted to provide their four children with the same kind of wholesome childhood they had growing up in the Midwest. Ms. Hayes fondly remembers the neighborhood Christmas caroling, where one of the residents always played Santa; Fourth of July plays, bicycle parades, Easter egg hunts and other group activities. “We’re within easy walking distance to HolbrookPalmer Park and the library,” she adds. Mr. Barca, president of the Lloyden Park Homeowners’ Association, says the small neighborhood of about 84 homes gets together when the need arises. In the past, neighbors successfully encouraged Caltrans to re-route traffic away from the area for the sake of children and the elderly. The neighborhood is the best of all possible worlds because it is close, yet private, he says. A potential high-speed rail system is currently causing concern among homeowners who fear it could affect property values, he says. This issue has been the main focus of the homeowners’

LOCATION: Wilburn Avenue and Lloyden Drive, and El Camino Real and Southern Pacific Railroad tracks NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION: Lloyden Park Homeowners’ Association, David Barca, president, 650-368-1427 PARK: Holbrook Palmer Park, 150 Watkins Ave., Atherton PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Redwood City School District — Selby Lane School, 170 Selby Lane, Atherton; Kennedy Middle School, 2521 Goodwin Ave., Redwood City; plus magnet schools Sequoia Union High School District — Menlo Atherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Downtown Menlo Park MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $2,169,000 ($1,210,000-$3,210,000) HOMES SOLD: 6

association for the past few years. The homeowners association is also responsible for planning social events which bring Lloyden Park residents together, residents say. “Atherton has this image of being the parochial home on big properties, but this is the more affordable part of Atherton. This is the neighborhood for people who want to be neighborly,” he says. — Susan Golovin


Jackie and Richard thank you for trusting us to help you achieve your Real Estate Success. R & M Kennedy S Khan V Komin C & A Koo M Kopell M Krivopal E Kuo N Laird K & K Lashkari A Lau L & A Lau B & D Lawson D Lesikar S Li J & K Linley C Magill S Mahoney M & A Maarleveld E & M Marth L Martin P McBurney V Menager T Mock N Nadvornik L Naimark P & M Narth W Ng R Onizuka M & B Pade J Paul N Pedreiro A Peters L Portnoy S Puza R & T Quintana B Rhodes A Richards A Riley C Robinson

J Rortveit L Rost T & B Sana M Sarhaddi J Sasaki C Scal J Schneider I Shilov L Shilova N Shokrani C Sholtz A Shook M Shull M & L Sims L Sims S Solum K Sonntag A & D Srivastava E Stock M Tabazadeh J & O Tarvin K Toney G & V Toney C & C Van Zandt B Wallace A Wang R Ward K Washington L Watanabe J & C Whitty K Winer B & L Wingard M Wojtowicz S Wolff M Wozniak D Xu B & A Yatovitz W Young B Zaslow

Silicon Valley Power Realtor Team

(650) 855-9700 (650) 566-8033 jackie@apr.com richard@apr.com DRE # 01092400

DRE # 01413607

www.schoelerman.com

NEIGHBORHOODS

schoelerman

M & J Abidari M & A Armsby D Atkinson H & D Axtell R & S Bachman Y Baur G Bomze A Borkovsky L & V Brannen B & L Bruce R Callaway T Carmack D & K Chen R & C Chen J Chen M Chubb B & B Cleveland M Clyde V & S Conrad M Cummings D Degroff S Detering D Doherty A Drzewiecki J Du O Efromova M & B Egbert D & C Emmerson S Farhadi J Feghhi G Friedman B Ghoorah D & B Graham H Green M & M Griffith D & A Hagan S Hirmanpour S & M Jados K & J Kennedy

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WEST OF ALAMEDA

R

NEIGHBORHOODS

esidents agree that their neighborhood, West of Alameda — the area west of Alameda De Las Pulgas, between Walsh Road and Stockbridge Avenue — is a quiet part of Atherton with a natural feel. Mysterious estate-like properties with high gates and hedges spring up along roads that wind through hills covered with oaks, redwoods, eucalyptus and even olive trees. Some of the hilltop homes have sweeping views of the bay and the rolling hills. “It’s wonderful, that’s why I built,” says Patricia Arthur, who built a home in the neighborhood in 1955. While it neighbors Woodside High School and is just minutes from highway 280, this western-most area of the town of Atherton is secluded. West of Alameda residents can be

16

FACTS

seen enjoying the peaceful scenery while walking their dogs in the hills. “It’s like being in the country and yet we’re five minutes from Stanford Hospital and shopping centers,” Ms. Arthur says. While the streets are quiet, Ms. Arthur says there have been problems with people speeding in the neighborhood. Neighbors say you can sometimes hear coyotes, owls and mountain lions up in the hills at night. Judith Finch says her family moved to the neighborhood from San Francisco for the school district. She says her three children took the bus to school. “While the neighborhood holds an annual block party, there is not a sense of community because the houses are so far apart,” she says. — Sally Schilling

FIRE STATION: 3322 Alameda de las Pulgas, Menlo Park LOCATION: Alameda de las Pulgas to Hwy. 280; Menlo Park city border near Walsh Road to the Redwood City border near Fletcher Drive PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Las Lomitas School District — Las Lomitas School, 299 Alameda de las Pulgas, Atherton; La Entrada School, 2200 Sharon Road, Menlo Park Sequoia Union High School District — Woodside High School, 199 Churchill Ave., Woodside SHOPPING: Woodside Road, Woodside MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $3,797,500 ($1,115,000-$19,800,000) HOMES SOLD: 14


Expert Knowledge | Proven Results 4th generation Peninsula resident 6th generation San Francisco Bay Area resident Lyn Jason Cobb & Associates brings an emphasis on innovation and service to the local real estate market and our connections to the areas we serve go back for generations. That personal experience and in depth market knowledge give our clients a distinct advantage when buying or selling a home. Our Clients Receive: - Expert Market Analysis - Professional Photography & Brochures - Personalized & Effective Marketing Solutions including: EFlyers, Newspaper & Magazine Ads, Custom Websites, Virtual Tours, Worldwide E-Marketing Campaigns... and more. - 1031 Exchange Expertise - Staging Consultation - Access to our private list of home repair specialists - Full Time Service & Support

We get the Best Prices for our buyers and sellers

Lyn Jason Cobb & Associates Atherton | Menlo Park | Woodside | Portola Valley | Palo Alto | Redwood City | San Carlos 4OP!GENTs32%3 #(-3 % 02/ '2%%.#%24)&)%$

Herschel Cobb: 650.464.2624 HRCobb@gmail.com

Regan Byers: 650.678.7765 Regan.Byers@cbnorcal.com

www.CallLyn.com www.LynJasonCobb.com

NEIGHBORHOODS

Lyn Jason Cobb: 650.566.5331 LynJason.Cobb@cbnorcal.com

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ATHERTON OAKS

W

NEIGHBORHOODS

edged between the Caltrain tracks and Middlefield Road, it’s easy to confuse Atherton Oaks for one of the well-established surrounding neighborhoods. What’s more, Holbrook Palmer Park and Felton Gables cleave it nearly in two, leaving one side running from Watkins Avenue to Fair Oaks Lane and the other from Encinal Avenue to Glenwood Avenue. Tom Holt, who has lived in the area for 30 years, doesn’t mind the Atherton Oaks’ odd shape, but said that it’s sometimes overlooked. “In our experience this place is kind of a sleeper,” he said. “When people think of Atherton, they think of Lindenwood, Felton Gables or West Atherton and they kind of forget about this little corridor.” Still, being on the edge of Atherton and Menlo Park has its perks, he said. “We really enjoy the rural sense of Atherton while being really close to Menlo Park,” he said. “It’s an easy walk to downtown. It’s the kind of community where you know folks, and as you encounter them you can catch up on how their family is doing and what they’re up to.” The area is surrounded by a number of

18

schools, including Encinal Elementary, Menlo-Atherton High School, Sacred Heart and Menlo School. Of course, Holbrook Palmer Park is extremely close, as well. Holt, whose two children attended nearby public schools, said these amenities make the neighborhood a perfect place for young families to start. Its proximity to the schools can make it difficult to navigate traffic once school gets out, but commuter traffic isn’t bad, and it’s easy enough to plan alternate routes to avoid El Camino Real and Middlefield Road, Holt said. “Everything is kind of an easy drive,” said Holt, who works in Menlo Park. “We don’t really buy into the whole traffic problem idea.” Another perk of living in the area is the comparatively larger lots it contains. “One of the nice things is the sense of space,” he said. “Some places in Menlo are quite pricey and they’re typically a half acre or a quarter acre, where we have a whole acre.” In the end, Holt said the neighborhood isn’t negatively affected by being divided by Felton Gables and Holbrook Palmer

FACTS CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: The Playschool, Holbrook-Palmer Park, 150 Watkins Ave., Atherton FIRE STATION: 300 Middlefield Road, Menlo Park LOCATION: Between Laurel Street and Middlefield Road. From Glenwood Avenue to Encinal Avenue and Watkins Avenue to Fair Oaks Lane. PARK: Holbrook-Palmer Park, 150 Watkins Ave., Atherton PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Menlo Park City Elementary School District — Laurel School, 95 Edge Road, Atherton; Encinal School, 195 Encinal Ave., Menlo Park; Hillview Middle School, 1100 Elder Ave., Menlo Park Sequoia Union High School District — Menlo Atherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Downtown Menlo Park MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $2,790,000 ($235,000-$3,700,000) HOMES SOLD: 4

Park. While distinct, it’s similarly pleasant compared to surrounding neighborhoods. “I wouldn’t say there’s some kind of great differentiating aspect,” he said. “Everywhere in this area is really delightful.” — Eric Van Susteren


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19


WEST ATHERTON

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NEIGHBORHOODS

esidents will tell you there is no shortage of space and peacefulness in West Atherton. The rural feel of the area, boasting big lots and lanes without sidewalks, has been preserved through a long history. In 1860, Faxon Dean Atherton purchased more than 600 acres, essentially what is now West Atherton. He built his home at the center of this plot, what is now the Menlo Circus Club, a private country club, which hosts polo games and charity events. Atherton’s city government encourages the preservation of the community’s country feel. Most of the town is zoned for one-acre lots and a town ordinance that protects the heritage trees in the area; oaks, redwoods, cedars and pines. Dean Sivara, who has lived in the neighborhood for more than two years, says “it is nice to have the space and the maturity on a quieter street.” Mr. Sivara previously lived in Menlo Park, which he said was far more crowded than West Atherton. “We can walk the dogs and there is not a lot of traffic. The freeway is a little faster to get to and there is less congestion, so we have the ability to enjoy neighborhood.” Mr. Sivara says the large lots prevent him from having much contact with the neighbors. “There are a lot of gates and fences so you only see the neighbors if they’re walking, you wouldn’t go through the gate.” Helen Carey, who has lived in the neighborhood for 59 years, agreed. “It isn’t like

20

FACTS

Menlo Park, the neighbors are more separated here. We like to live a quiet life.” Ms. Carey says she chats with other neighbors by phone and some of the neighbors were very friendly with her kids when they were in school. “I love everything the town has to offer,” she says. Tom Owen echoed Carey’s praise for Atherton. “I feel very privileged to have been raised in this town,” Mr. Owen, says. He was born and raised on Robleda Drive and moved back to the neighborhood in 1995. While there was nothing extraordinary that drew him back to his old stomping grounds, the climate and the big yard of his new home were appealing. “My kids have room to run and play,” he says. Mr. Owen, who has two daughters ages 10 and 13, says they don’t get together much with the other young families in the neighborhood because the houses are so spread apart. Despite the separation by large lots, Mr. Owen says he still feels a strong sense of community because of the uniquely personable police department in Atherton. The police will come out if someone loses their dog or they will check up on your home while you are on vacation. “The police department does a phenomenal job, truly a level of service, they’re not just out there writing tickets. If your daughter is home with a babysitter, they can put another guy in the area to make her feel more comfortable,” he says. — Sally Schilling

CHILD CARE AND PRESCHOOLS: St. Joseph’s Montessori Preschool and Kindergarten, 150 Valparaiso Ave., Atherton FIRE STATION: 32 Almendral Ave., Atherton LOCATION: Alameda de las Pulgas and El Camino Real; Selby Lane and Valparaiso Avenue PRIVATE SCHOOLS: St. Joseph’s School, 50 Emilie Ave., Atherton; Menlo School, 50 Valparaiso Ave., Atherton; Sacred Heart Prep,150 Valparaiso Ave., Atherton; Menlo College, 1000 El Camino Real, Atherton PUBLIC SCHOOLS: (Eligibility for school districts depends on resident’s address) Menlo Park City Elementary School District — Oak Knoll School, 1895 Oak Knoll Lane, Menlo Park; Encinal Elementary School, 195 Encinal Ave., Menlo Park; Hillview Middle School, 1100 Elder Ave., Menlo Park Redwood City School District — Selby Lane School, 170 Selby Lane, Atherton; Kennedy Middle School, 2521 Goodwin Ave., Redwood City; plus magnet schools Sequoia Union High School District — MenloAtherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Downtown Menlo Park; Stanford Shopping Center MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $3,825,000 ($900,000-6,500,000) HOMES SOLD: 14


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CITY GENERAL FUND BUDGET: $40.1 million POPULATION (2010): 32,026

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Park: Beyond the Gate.” Landowners first incorporated back in 1874, but chose to “disincorporate” a mere two years later. It wasn’t until 1927 that today’s city was established. Menlo Park now offers a suburban enclave with many urban amenities: from a bustling downtown and strong public school district, to plenty of parks and recreation facilities.

HOUSEHOLDS (2007-2011): 12,347 SINGLE-FAMILY HOUSING (2010): 61.3 percent MEDIAN HOME PRICE: $1,830,000 MEDIAN CONDOMINIUM PRICE: $994,000 MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOME (2010): $105,909

NEIGHBORHOODS

nce known as the “Sleepy Hollow of California,” Menlo Park did not take off as a community until after World War II. Despite its proximity to Stanford University, Sand Hill Road venture capitalists, dot-com start-ups and research institutions, “Menlo Park still at least seems like a small town,” notes Michael Svanevik and Shirley Burgett in their published “Menlo

23


ALLIED ARTS/STANFORD PARK

NEIGHBORHOODS

With its old-town charm, Allied Arts/ Stanford Park seems a world away from the hustle of El Camino Real to its east, and the promise of new high-tech concerns such as Tesla Motors. The cutting-edge electric-car company hosts a show room of sports cars just across El Camino. But tucked inside the neighborhood, a country feel remains. A lack of sidewalks results in a perfect place for strolling among 1925 bungalow homes, attractive flower gardens and fruit trees on roads named after colleges — Yale Road, Cambridge Avenue, Princeton Road, Cornell Road and Harvard Avenue. Lamp-topped pillars mark the entrance to the neighborhood. And old and shady trees grace the streets. Small enough that one could run laps around it, the neighborhood is marked by four distinct streets: Middle Avenue on the north, San Francisquito Creek to the south and Allied Arts Guild on Arbor Road to the west. Allied Arts Guild is a centerpiece of the neighborhood and a main attraction. The Spanish-Colonial designed complex came into existence in 1929 and developed as an artisan’s workspace of studios and shops. James Hill owned a candle shop and a gourmet cookware shop called “Batterie de Cuisine” in the guild from 1963 to 2002. He

24

FACTS

moved to Allied Arts in 1972 with his wife Elaine and the couple live in a 1935 Tudorstyle house that allowed him to be “living over the store, so to speak,” he says. Stephanie Brown moved in more than 30 years ago. The “distinctive, autonomous, individual design of the homes creates a sense of individuality,” she says. That individuality has allowed the neighborhood to keep its identity over the years as it has matured, she says. A local meeting spot for residents is “The O” — The Oasis Beer Garden. It’s a burger and pizza bar located in a WWI building that had peanut shells on the floor and was one of the first places with a big-screen television. The neighborhood is close to just about anything a resident might need: Draeger’s Market, Stanford University and Stanford Shopping Center and downtown Menlo Park are all within walkable distance. Residents say more families are moving in and residents says some homes have been renovated or newly-built. “The architecture is eclectic,” Ms. Brown says. But one characteristic has stayed constant: The “caring and kind people in the neighborhood,” she says. — Kris Young

CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: Menlo-Atherton Cooperative Nursery School, 802 Middle Ave. FIRE STATION: 700 Oak Grove Ave. LOCATION: Middle Avenue to San Francisquito Creek; Arbor Road to El Camino Real PARK: Nealon Park, 800 Middle Ave. PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Menlo Park City Elementary School District — Oak Knoll School; Hillview Middle School; Sequoia Union High School District — MenloAtherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Downtown Menlo Park, Stanford Shopping Center MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $1,295,000 ($562,600-$2,300,000) HOMES SOLD: 36


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Fremont Park Nealon Park

NEIGHBORHOODS 25


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PALO ALTO Brian Chancellor Davena Gentry Owen Halliday Leannah Hunt Bob Kamangar Kristine Kim-Suh Kristin Bachedler Kennerly R. Brendan Leary Kathleen Pasin Christine Perry Laurel Robinson Chris Trapani Alex H. Wang LESLIE WOODS James Yang

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FAIR OAKS

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NEIGHBORHOODS

iding in plain view between Menlo Park and Redwood City, the unincorporated community of Fair Oaks strikes a delicate balance between the peacefulness of the country and the bustle of city life. Commuter convenience is what Jenny Donnelly likes most about her home on Fair Oaks Avenue. “We’re close to the freeway, but were not right on top of it,” Ms. Donnelly says of U.S. Highway 101. She works in Sunnyvale and her husband works in San Mateo — both “easy commutes,” from their home, which is just a short drive from Highway 101. Her location also makes scheduling flights easier, as she is able to choose between the equidistant San Jose and San Francisco airports, she says. A sense of community is another benefit, says Ms. Donnelly, who moved to her home in 2006 and enjoys walking her dog through the tree-lined streets. “You end up standing on a street corner having conversations with your neighbors.” Dale Miller agrees. “People are more interested in getting together here than in other neighborhoods,” says Mr. Miller, who has lived on Ninth

28

FACTS FIRE STATION: 4101 Fair Oaks Ave., Menlo Park

Avenue since 1990. He remembers planting about 350 trees with his neighbors, in an effort spearheaded by the Fair Oaks Beautification Association. In addition to the tree-planting, the association raised money to build a neighborhood playground. Mr. Miller walks or drives to a local strip mall, which has a dry cleaner, liquor store and market. The Caltrain station is a bit further. It is easier to get ordinances and zoning regulations changed in Fair Oaks because it is unincorporated, Mr. Miller says. About a decade ago the community installed round islands in the middle of intersections, which both slow traffic, and add aesthetic appeal — trees, bushes and flowers sprout from each, he says. Another benefit of living under county rule, he says, is that the community has managed to keep “McMansions” out of Fair Oaks. Lisa Burnett has lived on Encina Avenue since 1997. She also enjoys taking walks through Fair Oaks. “There are lots of trees and I love that there are no sidewalks,” she says. Roy Hills, who has lived on Encina Avenue since 1980, loves the neighborhood for its heritage oaks and well-kept yards. He knows many of his neighbors well and said

LOCATION: Fifth Avenue at the Redwood City border to Marsh Road and north of Middlefield and Semicircular roads NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION: Fair Oaks Beautification Association, www.fobaneighbors.org PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Redwood City School District — Garfield School, 3600 Middlefield Road, Redwood City Sequoia Union High Scholl District — Menlo-Atherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Middlefield Road, Redwood City; Marsh Manor MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $647,500 ($286,000-$2,225,000) HOMES SOLD: 34

that Fair Oaks has a “real sense of community, he says. “It’s been a great place to raise kids,” Mr. Hills adds. Growing up, his children had many playmates in the neighborhood and often enjoyed soccer or softball games on the large front lawn. — Nick Veronin


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CENTRAL MENLO PARK

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NEIGHBORHOODS

lton Sherwin loves his Central Menlo Park home for many reasons: “great schools, great commute, great weather, the biking and the walking.” And he especially likes the “smaller-town feel of Menlo Park,” he says. Mr. Sherwin is a cycling enthusiast and loves to ride his bike through the flat Stanford campus or in the nearby hilly trails. He also walks or takes his bicycle down to Safeway or Draeger’s about once a week to fetch necessary items. “Being within walking distance of those things has been very nice. You can live here and work almost anywhere and have a great commute,” he says. There is a great sense of community in Central Menlo Park, according to Mr. Sherwin. Mr. Sherwin, a longtime resident of North Lemon Avenue who recently moved to the neighborhood’s edge at Westfield, says residents of many streets in the neighborhood do an annual block party where they block off the street for festivities.

30

FACTS

Bob Caletti, a Menlo Park resident his entire life, has lived on Wallea Drive since 1970. “Menlo Park has a very small town feel,” he says. The father of five children, Mr. Caletti says he was very pleased with the schools and all the local recreation his kids had growing up. Each Halloween children come to see the famous “talking pumpkin,” he says. In general, the neighborhood is very walkable, he says. His only concern is that downtown may become over-developed. John Fox moved into Central Menlo in 1993 because, according to Mr. Fox, he “liked the local flavor.” A former city commissioner who served for 11 years, Mr. Fox is pleased about plans for a pedestrian and bike under-crossing on Middle Ave. and would like to see more bike lanes and paths throughout the city. “There’s tremendous potential here, because it’s flat and because of the layout and structure,” he says. Increased accessibility is a priority, he adds. — Nick Veronin

CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: The Kirk House Preschool, St. Joseph’s Montessori Preschool and Kindergarten, Littlest Angels Bethany Preschool FIRE STATION: 700 Oak Grove, Menlo Park LOCATION: Valparaiso Avenue to San Francisquito Creek; Cloud Avenue to Arbor Drive and Johnson St. PARKS: Tinker Park, Jack W. Lyle Park, Fremont Park, Nealon Park PRIVATE SCHOOLS: Menlo School, Sacred Heart Prep, St. Joseph’s School, St. Raymond’s Elementary School PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Menlo Park City Elementary School District — Oak Knoll School, 1895 Oak Knoll Lane, Menlo Park; Hillview Middle School, 1100 Elder Ave., Menlo Park Sequoia Union High School District — Menlo-Atherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $2,000,000 ($1,200,000-$7,625,000) HOMES SOLD: 61 MEDIAN 2012 CONDOMINIUM PRICE: $810,000 ($625,000-$975,000) CONDOMINIUMS SOLD: 3


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DOWNTOWN MENLO PARK

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h, to live in Downtown Menlo Park. Close to the library, Kepler’s, the Caltrain stations and all the shops and restaurants of Santa Cruz Avenue — and within biking distance of Stanford and downtown Palo Alto. Appealing homes with attractive yards and streets. It’s so pleasant, residents say, that people stay put for many years, while newcomers continue to be attracted to its mix of amenities and charm. Edwin and Joyce Brandle moved in to their home on Oak Avenue more than 40 years ago and say they’re as happy with the neighborhood now as they were when they first moved from the East Coast, after looking in the North and East Bay and settling on Menlo Park. “We liked what we saw. It looked like a nice, small town,” Edwin Brandle says, adding that they admired the well-kept homes and yards and heard good things about the school system. “It’s convenient to downtown shopping, the Stanford Shopping Center and the hospitals and clinics,” he adds. Beverly Altman and her husband David, are also longtime residents. They’ve been in the neighborhood for nearly half a century. “We lived in Los Altos first but I had my heart set on Menlo Park,” Ms. Altman says. The schools, along with the proximity to Stanford and the community in general drew her there.

32

She describes her neighborhood as made up mostly of ranch houses but with newer additions and construction mixed in with original homes. She loves the fine-dining options of the downtown area, and the range of retail establishments. “The restaurants are good and bustling, the markets are good and we’re getting more new ones. Plus Stanford Shopping Center is always exciting,” she says. However, the economic downturn of recent years has not left downtown Menlo Park unaffected. “There are empty storefronts now; it’s sad and a big change. Another sign of the times is seeing homeless people on the streets, it’s unusual,” she says, also expressing regret at the closure of the Park movie theater. Over the years it’s also become a little less quiet as Silicon Valley has developed, she says. “There’s definitely more traffic now — traffic in downtown, traffic on El Camino. It’s gone from a small town to, well, a very busy small town.” Though the Brandles and Altmans have lived in the area for decades, they say young families continue to flock to the neighborhood, keeping it vital. “There are many younger people now, that’s good. It’s very welcoming for new people,” Mr. Brandle says.

FACTS CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: Menlo-Atherton Cooperative Nursery School, 802 Middle Ave., Menlo Park FIRE STATION: 700 Oak Grove Ave., Menlo Park LOCATION:Valparaiso Avenue to Middle Avenue and El Camino Real to Johnson Street and Arbor Road PARKS: Fremont Park, Santa Cruz and University Drive; Nealon Park, 800 Middle Ave., Menlo Park SHOPPING: Downtown Menlo Park, Stanford Shopping Center PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Menlo Park City Elementary School District — Oak Knoll School, 1895 Oak Knoll Lane, Menlo Park; Hillview Middle School, 1100 Elder Ave., Menlo Park Sequoia union High School District — Menlo-Atherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $1,260,500 ($631,000-$1,550,000) HOMES SOLD: 9

The schools have remained popular and full, Ms. Altman says, as families with kids continue to feel at home. “It doesn’t take too long to be appreciative of what we have here — the trees, the flowers. It’s a nice place. We like it,” Mr. Brandle says. —Karla Kane


NEIGHBORHOODS

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FELTON GABLES

A

NEIGHBORHOODS

lmost surrounded by Atherton, the small Menlo Park neighborhood of Felton Gables is named for the 1870s era estate on which it was built: the former home of Senator Charles Norton Felton. Bordered by Holbrook Palmer Park, Encinal Avenue, and the Southern Pacific Railroad tracks, Felton Gables homes were built between the 1920s and 1950s. Because lots were built and sold individually, the neighborhood’s 115 custom homes were built in an eclectic range of architectural styles, residents say. “It doesn’t feel like a cookie-cutter neighborhood and has nice winding streets,” Gayle Blumberg, a resident since 1993, says. Home designs ranging from modern, Spanish villa, cottage and ranch styles to Craftsman and New England architecture dot the streets lined with mature oak, beech, maple and magnolia trees. Diana Beuttler says each lot in Felton Gables, at an average size of a quarter acre, housed a small home when she moved to the “enclosed neighborhood” in 1968 for its “convenient location and attractive homes.” Felton Gables residents developed stricter zoning requirements which limit the size of second floor rebuilds, but many homes have since been rebuilt with second stories. The neighborhood now houses a mix of larger and smaller homes. Despite architectural changes, residents say the area’s secluded geography has meant for consistent camaraderie

34

among residents and a general sense of neighborhood safety that draws up to two hundred Trick or Treaters each Halloween. “It’s so inviting that at Halloween people across Menlo Park bring their children here because it’s so small and safe,” 36-year resident Barbara Wood says. Residents say nearby Holbrook Palmer Park serves as an extended backyard for neighborhood children. and Encinal School makes Felton Gables attractive to people with families. While many original residents moved to the neighborhood seeking to downsize from large country lots in Atherton and Woodside, now younger families live alongside established residents. “It’s a very nice mix of older, middleaged, and young families,” Ms. Blumberg says. Community get-togethers are common, with the Felton Gables Homeowners’ Association running a fall adult cocktail party, a general meeting in the spring, and a widely attended Fourth of July picnic complete with a children’s parade and a range of barbecue fare. Association dues are modest, but the board voted this year to donate a surplus to an organization representing community members on plans for High-Speed Rail. Concerns about railroad expansion plans are widespread, as many residents on the railway border fear they could lose their properties to eminent domain. Despite such concerns, turnover remains low, and residents say neighbors appreciate

FACTS CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: The Playschool, Holbrook Palmer Park, 150 Watkins Ave., Atherton; Trinity Early Childhood Program, 2650 Sand Hill Road, Menlo Park, Menlo Park FIRE STATION: 32 Almendral Ave., Atherton LOCATION: West of Southern Pacific Railroad tracks and south of Holbrook Palmer park, between Watkins and Encinal avenues PARK: Holbrook-Palmer Park, 150 Watkins Ave. PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Menlo Park City School District — Laurel School, 95 Edge Road, Atherton; Encinal School, 195 Encinal Ave., Atherton; Hillview Middle School, 1100 Elder Ave., Menlo Park Sequoia Union High School District — MenloAtherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Downtown Menlo Park MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $1,600,000 ($1,400,000-$1,800,000) NO. OF HOMES SOLD: 2 MEDIAN 2012 CONDOMINIUM PRICE: $267,500 ($265,000-$270,000) CONDOMINIUMS SOLD: 2

one another. “It’s really an incredibly friendly neighborhood,” Ms. Beuttler says. Neighbors keep in touch on strolls through the shady streets of Felton Gables. “You know everyone in your own little pocket in the neighborhood, and people watch out for each other,” Mrs. Wood adds. — Sarah Trauben


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LINFIELD OAKS

NEIGHBORHOODS

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n a Sunday afternoon at Burgess Park, Isaac Armenta outlined the benefits of living in Linfield Oaks as he watched his two-year-old son play on a swing. “There’s a lot of stores nearby ... lots of trees, easy access to all the freeways and transportation, like the train,” he said. But the quality of life comes at a price. “It’s a great place to live. I wish I could buy a house,” said Armenta, a traffic signal electrician for the city of Palo Alto who rents a unit in a four-plex. Linfield Oaks was developed in the 1950s and has a mix of single-family homes and multi-family units in addition to office space around its edges. Stanford Research Institute, the U.S. Geological Survey and Sunset Magazine are all based on the outskirts of the neighborhood, which is bordered by San Francisquito Creek, Middlefield Road, Ravenswood Avenue and Alma Street. Seeking a family-friendly environment to raise their children, Frank and Margaret Carney moved to Menlo Park from New York City in 1972. They bought their onestory ranch house in Linfield Oaks in 1979. Frank said different streets in the neighborhood are characterized by the trees that line them: camphor trees on Claremont Way, liquid ambers on East Creek, and ash on Willow Road. Today, there are fewer Camphor trees than when the Carneys first arrived. Frank remembers when their overhanging branches would cause logistical problems when he threw the football around with his two sons. “You couldn’t throw it too high, because it would hit the trees,” he said. The Carneys expressed some misgivings about development and the cost of homes. One of their sons is a schoolteacher, while the other works at Dreamworks, and neither can afford to live in the neighborhood they grew up in. “In the early seventies, you didn’t have to be wealthy to live in Menlo Park,” said Frank, who worked as a probation officer and family court mediator for San Mateo County before retiring. “You had to have savings and a good middle class (job).” A block from the Carneys, Roland Kelly lives with his wife and three children in a one-story home built in 1955.

FACTS

Originally from Ireland, Kelly moved to Linfield Oaks in 2005 and spends some of his evenings in a detached home office built by the original owner. He believes it was one of the first home offices in Silicon Valley, predating the current widespread use of telecommuting. Kelly, who works for SAP, said many of his neighbors also work in Silicon Valley and include a number of executives. But he said residents have tried to maintain the character of the neighborhood. “For the most part, homes are not completely demolished,” said Kelly. “They are tastefully remodeled.” Kelly’s children take advantage of their proximity to Burgess Park, using the swimming pool, baseball diamond and soccer field. Other facilities at the park include basketball and tennis courts and the new Arrillaga Family Gymnastics Center. Resident Louise Kim watched her nineyear-old son lift himself into the air while practicing on the rings. “It’s his favorite event,” said Kim, an anesthesiologist at Stanford who lives in a subdivision built in 1999. —Bryce Druzin

CHILD CARE AND PRESCHOOLS: Geokids Day Care Center, 345 Middlefield Road #204, Menlo Park; Burgess After-school Program, Burgess Kindercat Program, Menlo Park Recreation Center, 701 Laurel St., Menlo Park, Menlo Children’s Center, 801 Laurel St. Menlo Park FIRE STATION: 300 Middlefield Road, Menlo Park LOCATION: West of Middlefield Road to Alma Street and San Francisquito Creek to Ravenswood Avenue NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION: E-mail coordinator: JoAnne Goldberg, 650-327-4716 PARK: Burgess Park, Alma Street and Mielke Drive, Menlo Park PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Menlo Park City Elementary School District — Laurel School, 95 Edge Road, Atherton; Encinal School, 195 Encinal Avenue, Menlo Park; Hillview Middle School, 1100 Elder Avenue, Menlo Park Sequoia Union High School District — Menlo Atherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Downtown Menlo Park MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $1,320,000 ($410,000-$1,565,000) HOMES SOLD: 7 MEDIAN 2012 CONDOMINIUM PRICE: $370,000 ($300,000-$520,840) CONDOMINIUMS SOLD: 9


NEIGHBORHOODS

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MENLO OAKS

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NEIGHBORHOODS

umpy, cracked roads in obvious need of repair might draw grumbles from residents in many neighborhoods. But when San Mateo County offered to repave roads in Menlo Oaks, residents said thanks, but no thanks. “We just wanted them patched,” said longtime resident Elizabeth Gheleta. “And that’s to keep the neighborhood from becoming a thoroughfare.” Flanked by the comparatively busy Ringwood Avenue and Bay Road, streets within Menlo Oaks are often shaded by trees and narrow enough that cars must slow down to a crawl to pass each other. Yards with vegetation running wild and the lack of street lights adds to the area’s atmosphere. “We liked the trees, we liked the big lots, we liked the rural feel,” said Michael Johnston, explaining his decision to move to the area with his wife in 2003. Johnston is president of the Menlo Oaks District Association, an organization for residents of the 106-acre island of unincorporated county land surrounded by Menlo Park and Atherton. The association publishes a tri-annual online newsletter and holds a yearly community meeting. It also puts on an annual summer picnic at the Peninsula School, located in the heart of the neighborhood. The private, progressive K-8 school was founded in 1925 and is the site of the historic Coleman Mansion. For the last couple years, the association has also helped coordinate Halloween activities, creating maps marking which houses are handing out candy and also pit stops for parents that provide “adult

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beverages.” Residents said an influx of new families has enlivened the area. “There was a period when there were hardly and young children around ... and then there was a resurgence in the last 10 years,” said Gheleta, who lives in the singlesingle story ranch house her husband helped build in 1960. When Gheleta arrived with her three young children, her neighbors included not only people but horses, sheep, chickens and rabbits. Land owned by neighboring St. Patrick’s Seminary was not yet developed. Gheleta said her children used the area as their private playground. “One day my son came home with a 4-foot gopher snake around his neck,” she said. Today, her daughter runs a plant nursery and one of her sons practices environmental law, careers Gheleta said are connected to their childhood experiences. Despite the lack of sidewalks, residents of Menlo Oaks and surrounding communities regularly stroll the narrow roads. “The streets are fun to walk in, and there’s not a lot of traffic,” said Flood Park resident Michael Geary as he walked his two dogs. Menlo Oaks resident Diane Klein Kavey usually takes daily walks, but sometimes her multiple sclerosis prevents her from doing so. When this happens, she said her neighbors notice her absence from the streets and check in on her. “There’s a lot of neighborly attention,” said Kavey, a retired estate planner who’s lived in the area since 1996. There is a downside to the rural feel

FACTS CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: Peninsula School, 920 Peninsula Way, Menlo Park; The Roberts School, 641 Coleman Ave., Menlo Park FIRE STATION: 300 Middlefield Road, Menlo Park LOCATION: Ringwood Avenue to Berkeley Avenue, adjacent to the Veterans Administration Medical Center; Bay Road to Arlington Way NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION: Menlo Oaks District Association, Michael Johnson, president, 650-533-5102. E-mail: president@menlo-oaks.org PARKS:Flood Park, 215 Bay Road, Menlo Park; Seminary Oaks Park, Santa Monica Avenue near Middlefield Road, Menlo Park; Willow Oaks Park, Willow Road near Gilbert Avenue, Menlo Park PRIVATE SCHOOLS: Peninsula School, Peninsula Way, Menlo Park PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Menlo Park City Elementary School District — Laurel School, 95 Edge Road, Atherton; Encinal School, 195 Encinal Ave., Menlo Park; Hillview Middle School, 1100 Elder Ave., Menlo Park Sequoia Union High School District — Menlo-Atherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Downtown Menlo Park MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $2,135,000 ($1,775,000-$3,900,000) HOMES SOLD: 9

that residents praised: spotty cell phone reception. Kavey said her husband’s phone recently cut out during a business teleconference. “My husbands a big tech guy, and no one can believe he can’t get get good cell coverage,” she said. —Bryce Druzin


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SHARON HEIGHTS

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itting atop the West Menlo Park hills is the Sharon Heights neighborhood. Developed for residential use by Duncan McDonald and Mark Radin in the 1960s, the neighborhood is home to a variety of residences, including houses, condominiums, townhouses and apartments. Neighbors say they love the hilly community with ample greenery and neat landscaping. “I love where I live,” says Dorothy Saxe, who moved with her husband to the neighborhood from Palo Alto in 1979. “The views and the neighbors are lovely, and the neighborhood is wellmaintained and convenient to shopping and 280.” Sharon Heights retains a quiet allure despite its proximity to commerce and thoroughfares. “The trees are beautiful as they change in the different times of year,” Cora Wiegard says. She has been watching the trees change through autumn and spring since she moved to the neighborhood in 1983. Although residents boast a choice of

FACTS

schools from among Phillips Brooks School, Trinity School, Las Lomitas School, La Entrada School and MenloAtherton High School, Ms. Wiegard and Mrs. Saxe both say that the townhomes and condominiums are home to mostly adult neighbors. Golf, athletics and social activities keep some residents involved with the Sharon Heights Golf and Country Club, which borders the 574-acre community along with Alameda de las Pulgas, Santa Cruz Avenue, and Sand Hill Road. The Sharon Heights Homeowners Association provides other opportunities for volunteering and socializing. It holds an annual summer party and an annual holiday party, Ms. Wiegard says. The condominiums tend to have community parties as well, Mrs. Saxe says of 1000 Sharon, a development home to spacious townhouses and condominiums. “Generally, we have annual holiday parties, which a condo resident hosts. We also have pool parties on Labor Day and the Fourth of July.” — Sarah Trauben

CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: Trinity School, 2650 Sand Hill Road, Menlo Park FIRE STATION: 3322 Alameda de las Pulgas LOCATION: Sand Hill Road and Hwy. 280; Santa Cruz Avenue and Alameda de las Pulgas NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION:Sharon Heights Homeowners’ Association, John Sakrison, president, 650-854-4487 PARKS: Sharon Park, Sharon Park Drive; Sharon Hills Park, Valparaiso Avenue at Altschul Avenue PRIVATE SCHOOLS: Phillips Brooks School, 2245 Avy Ave.; Trinity School, 2650 Sand Hill Road PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Las Lomitas School District — Las Lomitas School, 299 Alameda de las Pulgas, Atherton; La Entrada School, 2200 Sharon Road, Menlo Park Sequoia Union High School District — MenloAtherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Sharon Heights Shops MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $1,821,500 ($667,000-$4,300,000) HOMES SOLD: 21 MEDIAN 2011 CONDOMINIUM PRICE: $950,000 ($398,000-$1,688,000)

NEIGHBORHOODS

CONDOMINIUMS SOLD: 81

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Homes SOLD by Maya and Jason in Sharon Heights 2012

2010

2332 Crest Lane

1015 Monte Rosa Drive

945 Siskiyou Dive

9 Alexis Court

1010 Monte Rosa Drive

2009

24 Anderson Way 2419 Sharon Oaks

855 Sharon Park Drive

675 Monte Rosa #822 1280 Sharon Park Drive #28 1280 Sharon Park Drive #36 1280 Sharon Park Drive #40 1204 Sharon Park Drive #85

977 Continental Drive 977 Continental Drive* 2401 Sharon Oaks Drive 1055 Whitney Drive 1165 Monte Rosa Drive 1280 Sharon Park Drive #24

2011

1025 Lassen Drive*

924 Siskiyou Drive

1230 Sharon Park Drive #65*

1256 Sharon Park Drive

2332 Crest Lane* 584 Sand Hill Circle

2006 1262 Sharon Park Drive

2007

3 Carriage Court

1100 Sharon Park Drive #37

16 Biltmore Lane

1026 Cascade Drive

16 Biltmore Lane*

300 Sand Hill Circle #302

1021 Sierra Drive

8 Sunset Lane

1080 Deanna Drive

1280 Sharon Park Drive #26

1065 Continental Drive

940 Siskiyou Drive

28 Sunset Lane

1150 Klamath Drive 2323 Eastridge Ave #523 1290 Sharon Park Drive #48 2335 Crest Lane 1130 Trinity Drive 995 Lassen Drive

675 Monte Rosa Drive # 821 5 Shasta Lane 2315 Eastridge#712 980 Siskiyou Drive 921 Siskiyou Drive 1010 Continental Drive

702 Monte Rosa Drive

1300 Trinity Drive

2008

1204 Sharon Park Drive #85*

929 Siskiyou Drive

955 Siskiyou Drive

1040 Whitney Drive

300 Sand Hill Circle #203*

472 Sand Hill Circle

1100 Sharon Park Drive #35

9 Brent Ct.

2402 Sharon Oaks Drive

1045 Whitney Drive*

3 Alexis Court

2332 Crest Lane

1202 Sharon Park Drive #71

646 Sand Hill Circle*

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Maya and Jason Sewald Broker & Sales Associate

650.346.1228 (MAYA’S CELL) 650.307.8060 (JASON’S CELL) Mayasold@pacbell.net Jason@JasonSewald.com

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(MAYA SEWALD YOUR SOURCE FOR REAL ESTATE Since 1996

(MAYA SEWALD YOUR SOURCE FOR REAL ESTATE Since 1996 (MAYA SEWALD YOUR SOURCE FOR REAL ESTATE Since 1996

(MAYA SEWALD YOUR SOURCE FOR REAL ESTATE Since 1996 (MAYA SEWALD YOUR SOURCE FOR REAL ESTATE Since 1996 (MAYA SEWALD YOUR SOURCE FOR REAL ESTATE Since 1996

(MAYA SEWALD YOUR SOURCE FOR REAL ESTATE Since 1996

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SOUTH OF SEMINARY/VINTAGE OAKS

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NEIGHBORHOODS

he twin neighborhoods of South of Seminary and Vintage Oaks, though enclosed by the northern intersection of the busy thoroughfares of Willow Road and Middlefield, maintain a quiet, residential flavor. Mature redwoods, oaks, walnut and liquid ambar trees shade the streets in South of Seminary for locals strolling on curb-less sidewalks and sparse street traffic along the mostly one-story homes on modest lots. “It’s not a quaint neighborhood, but it is very comfortable,” says Sally Mendiola, who was raised in South of Seminary on property bought by her grandfather on Nash Street in the 1920s. She returned to a home on built in 1949 by her father, developer J. W. Fryckman, in 2003 to raise her daughter. Bordered by Santa Monica Road and Seminary Oaks Park, South of Seminary is named for its proximity to St. Patrick’s Seminary, which occupied 85 acres donated to the Catholic Church by Kate Johnson and was dedicated in l898. The neighborhood’s residences were built in the post-war period and into the 1950s, but many have been rebuilt or remodeled. Modest apartment complexes dot the neighborhood’s edges on Coleman and Willow. A sense of community feeling runs high, residents say, with Fourth of July festivities bringing neighbors together and the annual Nash Bash closing a block of Nash Avenue an afternoon each September. The potluck and barbeque, planned by Nash residents over an email list, attracts a large turnout of local families. Residents also deploy the email list when a pet goes missing or when they’d like to schedule a shared garage sale, residents say. “We look out for each other in this neighborhood,” Ms. Mendiola says. Jeanne DePrau, who lived on Santa Margarita Avenue for 33 years, says South of Seminary attracts a range of residents, from younger families to more established homeowners. The quiet neighborhood’s proximity to area shopping is a draw. “I can get to both downtown Menlo Park and downtown Palo Alto easily,” she says, adding that the library, recreation center, Willow Market and area schools are also 44 within biking distance.

Neighborliness draws young residents outdoors on three cul-de-sacs on the southern side of Santa Monica, and chalkdrawn pictures and games like hopscotch are a common sight. “On most weekend afternoons, everyone convenes outside and plays until the sun goes down,” especially in the summer months, says Lexy Eaton, a resident since 2008. Opposite Santa Monica Avenue lies a younger neighborhood development, built in the 1990s and named for its fully-grown foliage: Vintage Oaks. A 46-acre area with 131 larger homes and 14 townhouses, the development was built on fields formerly belonging to the seminary it surrounds. The subdivision houses a mixture of city workers, older residents and families with children who enjoy easy access to neighboring schools and public transit, as well as local restaurants. “We can bike and take the train everywhere,” says Armando Castellano, who moved to Vintage Oaks with his wife and sons in 2007. Both South of Seminary and Vintage Oaks have a reputation for safety. Neighborhood children enjoy access to Seminary Oaks Park at its center on Santa Monica Avenue. Mr. Castellano’s young sons Andries and Wim play there often. “It’s really quiet here,” Andries says. — Sarah Trauben

FACTS CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: Footsteps Preschool, 490 Willow Road, Menlo Park; The Roberts School, 641 Coleman Ave., Menlo Park FIRE STATION: 300 Middlefield Road, Menlo Park LOCATION: Middlefield Road and Coleman Avenue; Willow Road to Ringwood Avenue and Arlington Way PARK: Seminary Oaks Park, Santa Monica Avenue, near Middlefield Road, Menlo Park PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Menlo Park City School District — Laurel School, 95 Edge Road, Atherton; Encinal School, 195 Encinal Avenue, Atherton; Hillview Middle School, 1100 Elder Avenue, Menlo Park Sequoia Union High School District — Menlo Atherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Downtown Menlo Park MEDIAN 2010 HOME PRICE: South of Seminary/Vintage Oaks: $1,295,000 ($976,000-$3,995,000) HOMES SOLD: 26 MEDIAN 2012 CONDOMINIUM PRICE: South of Seminary: $527,500 ($525,000$529,000) CONDOMINIUMS SOLD: South of Seminary: 2


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SUBURBAN PARK/LORELEI MANOR/FLOOD TRIANGLE

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he 240 homes in the neighborhoods of Suburban Park, Lorelei Manor and Flood Triangle are three distinct neighborhoods linked by geography. Flood Park, 23 acres dotted with oak and bay trees, is the centerpiece of the three communities enclosed by Marsh Road, Bay Road and Highway 101. Many homes in Lorelei Manor were built in the early 1950s but have since been expanded to include an additional family room or second story. Kitty Craven, a resident for over 40 years says, “When we first moved, the homes were considered modern ranch, with allelectric kitchens, and forced-air heat.” Mrs. Craven has been active in the neighborhood association. Through the years the association, as the one in Suburban Park, has been a key element in organizing social get-togethers such as block parties, holiday celebrations and book clubs. Both associations play a strong role in advocating for neighborhood interests. Lorelei Manor fought for and won

a zoning overlay that is specific to neighborhood needs. The typically 1/8-acre lots are smaller than those in most of Menlo Park. Steve Wong lives next door to his parents in Suburban Park. “I’m one of at least five ‘returning children,’” he says, describing the special pull of his close-knit community. Suburban Park was established in 1945 and was developed as housing for military personnel. Remodeling and rebuilding have introduced a more eclectic look as well as larger homes. Kate Kennedy loves raising her children in Suburban Park. “There’s a real support system in the neighborhood,” she says. Flood Triangle has through traffic, which the cul-de-sac configurations of Lorelei Manor and Suburban Park discourage. Flood Park, an attractive, quiet oak-andbay-studded neighborhood park, offers a natural oasis from the sound of nearby freeway traffic from nearby Hwy. 101. — Susan Golovin

BELLE HAVEN

NEIGHBORHOODS

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onceived as an enclave of affordable housing for the working class when built during the Great Depression, the Belle Haven neighborhood, separated from the rest of Menlo Park by Highway 101, now houses the most diverse community in the city. A 540-acre triangle on the south side of Highway 101, the neighborhood’s boundaries are marked by the Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board Railroad to the north and Willow Road on the east end. The mostly residential neighborhood home to single-family residences, apartments and duplexes was first diversified by African Americans in the 1950s, with Hispanic and Pacific Islanders moving in the 1980s. The neighborhood remains diversified in the 2010s with many children raised in the neighborhood returning as adults, and young workers from nearby Facebook moving in. “Everyone loves this neighborhood that we live in,” Whitney Pine Hoermann says. After spending two years as a Teach for

FACTS CHILDCARE & PRE SCHOOLS: James B. Flood School, 320 Sheridan Ave., Menlo Park FIRE STATION: 300 Middlefield Road, Menlo Park Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Triangle LOCATION: Between Marsh Road, U.S. Hwy. 101 and Bay Road NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATIONS: Lorelei Manor: Salim Shaikh, president, 650-3266536 Suburban Park: Kristin Cox, 650-326-6825 PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Menlo Park City Elementary School District — Laurel School, 95 Edge Road, Atherton; Encinal School, 195 Encinal Ave., Menlo Park; Hillview Middle School, 1100 Elder Ave., Menlo Park Sequoia Union High School District — Menlo Atherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Marsh Manor MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $1,120,000 ($588,000-$1,451,000) HOMES SOLD: 24

FACTS America corps member at Belle Haven Elementary School, she moved to the community and says she has had former students live on her street. Raised in the neighborhood, Matthew Harris returned to Belle Haven upon his retirement in 1995 and is currently president of the Belle Haven Neighborhood Association. The community, residents say, is a neighborhood on the upswing. “I’ve seen a real change for the better,” 21-year resident Ms. Escobedo says. “New families are moving in, houses are being well-kept, and there is more eagerness to get involved in the community.” Neighborhood amenities include two parks, schools, a Boys and Girls Club, a senior center and the Onetta Harris Community Center, where residents say students enjoy art and cooking programs. “This community has the real potential to upgrade and uplift itself,” says Mr. Harris, adding that the community’s top priority is education. — Sarah Trauben

CHILD CARE AND PRESCHOOLS: Belle Haven Child Development Center, 410 Ivy Drive, Menlo Park; Belle Haven After-school Program, 415 Ivy Drive, Menlo Park; Family Connections, 415 Ivy Drive, #14, Menlo Park FIRE STATION: 1467 Chilco St., Menlo Park LOCATION: East of U.S. Highway 101 between Willow Road and Southern Pacific Railroad tracks, near Terminal Avenue PARKS: Kelly Park, Terminal Avenue near Del Norte Avenue, Menlo Park; Market Place Park, Ivy Drive and Market Place, Menlo Park PRIVATE SCHOOLS: Beechwood School, 50 Terminal Ave., Menlo Park PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Ravenswood City School District — Belle Haven Elementary School, 415 Ivy Drive, Menlo Park Sequoia Union High School District — Menlo Atherton, Carlmont or Woodside High School SHOPPING: Corner of Willow Road and Hamilton Avenue MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $359,050 ($200,000-$600,000) NO. OF HOMES SOLD: 38


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NEIGHBORHOODS


THE WILLOWS

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he Willows, bordered by Willow Road, Highway 101 and East O’Keefe Street, Middlefield Road and San Francisquito Creek, was known as North Palo Alto following the Depression. Developer Si Simon built a series of “Simon Built” homes along Central Avenue. In 1953, after the incorporation of Menlo Park, and with its contemporary borders, the area was given its present name. Residents say there’s no tract feeling in most of the area — but many mature trees and rambling, twisty roads. Gary Smith has lived on O’Connor Street since 1981. This December he celebrates the 21st anniversary of his Willows business, Menalto Cleaners, which is located in the same mini-strip as La Hacienda Market, Caffe Zoe, at the corner of Menalto and Gilbert. Mr. Smith remembers the floods brought on by El Nino in 1997-98, and says that the neighbors dealt with the damage the same way they have dealt with other crises. “Our neighborhood comes together to

FACTS

discuss and resolve. This neighborhood does not mess around.” He says that there is an earthquake preparedness committee, a Willows traffic group and several Yahoo groups, as well as a moms and babies group. The neighborhood is served by the Menlo Park School District, which annexed it from Ravenswood in 1982. When asked if there’s anything he doesn’t like, Mr. Smith pauses. “There’s a disregard for littering.” Since he feels that the neighborhood is “aesthetically beautiful,” it pains him to see the amount of debris, he says. Gentrification has taken place due to the influx of professionals in the popular neighborhood. He contributed to the trend by remodeling his own home in 1999, he adds. The neighborhood is an accepting one, Mr. Smith notes. “It’s a wonderful place. It’s warm, friendly, and diverse — racially and culturally.”

NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION: Willows_neighborhood@yahoogroups.com PARK: Willow Oaks Park, Willow Road near Gilbert Avenue, Menlo Park PRIVATE SCHOOLS: German-American School of San Francisco, 275 Elliott Drive, Menlo Park PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Menlo Park City Elementary School District — Laurel School, 95 Edge Road, Atherton; Encinal School, 195 Encinal Ave., Menlo Hillview Middle School, 1100 Elder Ave., Menlo Park Sequoia Union High School District — Menlo-Atherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Willow Road MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $1,150,000 ($562,000-$2,300,000) HOMES SOLD: 42

—Susan Golovin

NEIGHBORHOODS 49


UNIVERSITY HEIGHTS

NEIGHBORHOODS

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n the past 50 years, University Heights in unincorporated San Mateo County has changed dramatically. Once a sleepy neighborhood of small homes and summer cottages, it is now a lively blend of longtime residents and families with children. Many of the older homes have been replaced with large two-story residences. The business section along the Alameda de las Pulgas caters to young families drawn to the area because of the excellent Las Lomitas School District and the proximity to Stanford University. The Mix frozen yogurt shop, Lutticken’s wine bar, Studio Rincon yoga, dance and exercise facility, and Halo hair salon are among the area’s newest businesses. Many are owned by local residents. Even the Dutch Goose, the venerable burger-andbeer hangout, has been given a new look. University Heights has been shaped by leaders determined to save its small-town charm. In the 1970s environmentalists worked to prevent the Alameda from turning into a four-lane thoroughfare. Thirty years later, civic-minded residents campaigned to make the business section visitor friendly with street trees and paved sidewalks Christine Stahler certainly qualifies as a longtime University Heights resident. She’s lived on Valparaiso Avenue all her life. So has her mother, Anne Affrunti, who resides next door. Ms. Stahler lives in the house her grandparents built in 1936. Mrs. Affrunti, Ms. Stahler, and her daughters, Amanda and Kathleen, all attended Las Lomitas Elementary School. Ms. Stahler fondly remembers her childhood in University Heights: walking to the All-American market (corner of the Alameda and Avy Avenue) for candy and shopping at the dime store (Blockbuster Video). “The area has always been family oriented. It’s cozy and down-to-earth,” she says. Christine’s husband, Al Stahler, puts on an elaborate Halloween display every year, drawing hundreds of visitors. Gwen Faulkner, a psychologist and nurse, has lived in University Heights for seven years. The Las Lomitas School District, which her daughter attends, was a major factor in choosing the area. “It’s one of the best in the state,” she says.

FACTS

She also likes the sense of community. “I know most of the neighbors and they’re really nice.” A Starbucks regular, she likes being close to shopping on the Alameda and at Sharon Heights Shopping Center, eliminating the need to drive downtown. David and Tracy Williams, who moved to Sherman Avenue in July, already knew the neighborhood, having lived on Siskiyou Drive in Sharon Heights as grad students. Both have MBAs from Stanford University. The Williams family chose the area because of its convenience and, again, the outstanding Las Lomitas school district. After living in the hills in Belmont, says Mr. Williams, “It’s also great to be in flat land, where we can walk and ride our bikes everywhere.” They like being close to Alameda businesses instead of having to drive to downtown Menlo Park. The pair recently enjoyed their first Halloween on Sherman Avenue, where the street is closed and almost every house is decorated. “We went through 1,600 pieces of candy that night,” says Mr. Williams. — Jane Knoerle

CHILD CARE AND PRESCHOOLS: Children’s Creative Learning Center, Las Lomitas School, 299 Alameda de las Pulgas, Atherton; Littlest Angels Preschool, Bethany Lutheran Church, 1095 Cloud Ave., Menlo Park; the Phillips Brooks School, 2245 Avy Ave., Menlo Park; University Heights Montessori Children’s Center, 2066 Avy Ave., Menlo Park FIRE STATION: 3322 Alameda de las Pulgas, Menlo Park LOCATION: East and West of Alameda de las Pulgas to Altlschul Avenue to the west; Vine Street and Santa Cruz Avenue, Atherton border PRIVATE SCHOOLS: Phillips Brooks School, 2245 Avy Ave., Menlo Park; Trinity School, 2650 Sand Hill Road, Menlo Park PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Las Lomitas School District — Las Lomitas School, 299 Alameda de las Pulgas, Atherton; La Entrada School, 2200 Sharon Road, Menlo Park Sequoia Union High School District — Menlo-Atherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Alameda de las Pulgas, Sharon Heights Shopping Center MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $1,625,000 ($1,985,000-$4,800,000) HOMES SOLD: 49


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NEIGHBORHOODS 52

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FACTS TOWN OPERATING BUDGET: $4.59 million POPULATION (2011): 4,348

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with much of the Peninsula, the real surge for development came after World War II. The town of Portola Valley was incorporated in 1964 with the goals of preserving the beauty of the valley, fostering low-density housing, and limiting services to those necessary for local residents. To this day, the goal is to maintain a balance between the rural, quiet neighborhoods and the need for modern development.

SINGLE-FAMILY HOUSING (2011): 74 percent MEDIAN HOME PRICE: $2,182,500 MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOME (2007-11 estimate): $206,250

NEIGHBORHOODS

stride the San Andreas fault, with views extending from across the Bay to San Francisco, Portola Valley’s history begins with the logging town of Searsville. Its most famous 19th-century settler was Andrew Hallidie, inventor of the cable car, who purchased property in 1883, then donated land for a school and post office. Farming and stock ranching were major enterprises between 1860 and 1920, but as

HOUSEHOLDS (2010): 1,689

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BROOKSIDE

FACTS CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: Windmill Preschool, 4141 Alpine Road, Portola Valley; Ladera Community Church Preschool, 3300 Alpine Road, Portola Valley; Carillon Preschool at Christ Church, 815 Portola Road, Portola Valley; New Horizons (after school care), 200 Shawnee Pass, Portola Valley FIRE STATION: Woodside Fire Protection District, Portola Valley Station, 135 Portola Road, Portola Valley LOCATION:Brookside Drive and Portola Road PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Portola Valley School District — Ormondale School (K-3), 200 Shawnee Pass, Portola Valley; Corte Madera School (4-8), 4575 Alpine Road, Portola Valley Sequoia Union High School District — Woodside High School, 199 Churchill Ave., Woodside

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n a Monday afternoon, Kelly and Conor Flannery walked down Cortera Road after one of their regular runs on Toyon Trail. “We usually do the 6-mile trail,” said Kelly, who moved to Portola Valley four years ago with her husband, Conor. Toyon Trail is one of many trails near Brookside Park. The neighborhood lies on a hill bordered by Alpine, Portola and Corte Madera roads. “(We moved) to be close to hiking trails and for the school system,” said Kelly, who has a two-month-old son. “And to be more in a rural area, quiet neighborhood.” The couple said they see deer, raccoons, and foxes. But sometimes the wildlife can be a bit intrusive. “We had a wild turkey trapped in our garage,” Kelly said. John Richard remembers when Corte Madera was a dirt road. “Played in the dirt, mostly,” Richard said, describing what it was like growing up in the neighborhood during the 1950s and ’60s. Richard, an architect, lives on land his parents owned and in a house he designed and built in 1985. His do-it-yourself ethic extends to his backyard. He raises vegetables, grows fruit and keeps chickens, like his parents did. Richard said many of his neighbors do the same thing. “I like the ability to go out and dig in the ground,” he said. “That’s a big one, be a 54 little more self-sufficient.”

PRIVATE SCHOOLS: Woodside Priory School, 302 Portola Road, Portola Valley

Richard has witnessed ecological changes in the area. “There were no squirrels here when I was growing up ... we didn’t have crows, either,” he said. Richard said the neighborhood was tighter knit when he was young. He recalled his dad and four other families building a pool together and his mother leading groups of carolers from home to home during Christmas time. But he said that feeling isn’t completely gone, and that his immediate neighbors get together for dinners and parties. “It’s still a remarkably close neighborhood,” he said. Below the hill lies Brookside Orchard, named for the time when, prior to development in the 1920s, the land was home to apple and pear treas. The u-shaped Brookside Drive serves as the neighborhood’s only entrance and exit, and the narrow road is flanked by wood fences and a mix of single and multi-story homes. “When I was in college I used to do (yard) work here and loved it,” said resident Dan Cornew, who graduated from Stanford in 1984. “And I never thought I’d be back.” Cornew, a management consultant, arrived in the neighborhood 13 years ago with his wife and four children. When he moved in, he found himself sharing a fence with his college rowing coach, whose yard he had worked many years ago. “(That’s) a stranger part of the coincidence, because I didn’t pick this

SHOPPING: Nathhorst Triangle, Portola Road at Alpine Road; Village Square, 884 Portola Road; Ladera Shopping Center, 3130 Alpine Road, Portola Valley MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $1,550,000 ($1,225,000-$2,400,000) HOMES SOLD: 7

house. My wife did,” he said. Cornew said he felt he got more bang for his buck in Portola Valley than in neighboring towns. “In Palo Alto, I’d get a house shoehorned on six thousand square feet with rooms arranged so there would be everything the realtor said there was.” Portola Valley’s proximity to popular bike routes was another benefit for Cornew, who goes riding once a week with a cycling group. But he said his neighbors can get annoyed at the number of cyclists using the town’s roads. “They assume they’re from Menlo Park, invading,” he said. “To some extent they are. But, public roads.” —Bryce Druzin


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NEIGHBORHOODS

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CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: Carillon Preschool at Christ Church, 815 Portola Road, Portola Valley; Windmill Preschool, 4141 Alpine Road, Portola Valley

feels it is a very safe environment for them. When Karen and Karel Urbanek moved to Portola Valley a few years ago, it was primarily for a better school system. The older of their two daughters is attending kindergarten at Ormondale, right across the street from their home. Karel Urbanek is a cyclist and rides his bike to work at Stanford University. “He used to take long bike rides through Portola Valley and was taken with its beauty, trails, and open space,” says Ms. Urbanek. Another draw for the family was to be close to Irene Ruiz, Karel’s sister, who is also a Portola Valley resident. “Moving from Redwood City, I didn’t know the sense of community we would have here,” says Ms. Urbanek. “There is a small-town feeling.” For family activities, she says, “I love the park at Town Center and we go to the little library. The children can also ride their bikes on the trails.” Are there any disadvantages to living in the valley? “It takes a little bit longer to get to shopping, but it’s worth it,” she says.

FIRE STATION: 135 Portola Road, Portola Valley LOCATION: south of Westridge Drive to Portola and Alpine Roads and west of Alpine Road PARK: Little People’s Park at Portola Valley Town Center; Windy Hill Open Space Preserve PRIVATE SCHOOLS: Woodside Priory School, 302 Portola Road, Portola Valley PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Portola Valley School District — Ormondale School, 200 Shawnee Pass, Portola Valley; Corte Madera School, 4575 Alpine Road, Portola Valley Sequoia Union High School District — Woodside High School, 199 Churchill, Woodside SHOPPING: Portola Road; Valley Center (Portola and Alpine Roads), Ladera Country Shopper MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $2,400,000 ($1,310,000-$5,850,000) HOMES SOLD: 16

— Jane Knoerle

File photo

NEIGHBORHOODS

hen Sue Crane moved to Portola Valley nearly 50 years ago she and her husband, Hew, were drawn to Alpine Hills by the open space and exquisite views, but she felt isolated. With three little boys, she was used to backyards, to walking with a stroller in her old neighborhood in Barron Park. “I was very lonesome,” she recalls. After the boys entered school, that changed, however. She became involved in her sons’ school activities, then went on to become mayor of Portola Valley, serving 12 years on the Town Council. Now she has come full circle. Her youngest son, Dan, and his two daughters are living in a separate unit in her home and she is learning about the fine local schools again. “Now I’m re-visiting Corte Madera School.” “This gives me a new perspective and a great pleasure,” says Ms. Crane about living in a multi-generational family. “And there are more people that I know who are doing the same thing.” Her granddaughters enjoy watching the deer and the sense of open space. She also

FACTS


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cell: 650 888-1886 eashley@apr.com Square footage and/or acreage information contained herein has been received from seller, existing reports, appraisals, public records and/or other sources deemed reliable. However, neither seller nor listing agent has verified this information. If this information is important to buyer in determining whether to buy or the purchase price, buyer should conduct buyer’s own investigation.

NEIGHBORHOODS

Alain Pinel Realtors President’s Club Woodside Office

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LADERA

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eople who live in Ladera value it for the sense of community and belonging,” says Judith Weber, a resident since 1994. “It’s like a small town in the Midwest where the people look out for each other.” Ms. Weber loves when the Ladera Community Association (LCA) publishes a directory listing local kids who will baby-sit and pet-sit. She also likes the fact that many of the neighborhood children who compete on the swim team, and go to summer or tennis camp at the centrally located Ladera Recreation Center later go on to become lifeguards and camp counselors there when they’re older. “It’s a wonderful facility,” she says, also giving credit to the Caryotakis family who raised money from neighbors to put in a large playground next to the pool and tennis courts for all to enjoy. Peter Caryotakis grew up in Ladera and is now raising his own family there. Former LCA President Rob Decker says he sees this happen a lot. The kids return and maybe even buy their old family home. A resident since 1983, he says once you’ve lived in Ladera it’s hard to find anything that compares. “One thing that makes the neighborhood special is that there are amenities to which you can walk,” he says. A “network of pathways separate from the roads” leading to local restaurants and shopping are

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FACTS among Ladera’s draws, he adds. The neighborhood started out in the 1940s as an experiment in cooperative living, where the goal was to set up “a diverse community of modest homes, not too far apart, with shopping and nature,” Mr. Decker says. The plan ran into money trouble and ended up in the hands of developers. He estimates less than half of the 535 homes date back to the originals, but most are still ranch-style and situated on anywhere from quarter- acre to two-acre lots in the oak-studded hills of unincorporated San Mateo County, surrounded by Stanford University and Portola Valley. Anna Plume, her husband and their four children have lived in Ladera for 13 years. She chose the neighborhood specifically because of the sense of community she felt there — even when just looking for a house. “As a stay-at-home mom, I felt I needed a place where we could connect with other families,” she says. The sense of camaraderie in her neighborhood is wonderful, she adds. Her third child spent time in the hospital when he was a four-week-old; the neighbors fed the family for almost a month. And her older children can play in the cul-de-sac away from their house, without much adult supervision. Ms. Plume says she knows it is safe and that neighbors watch out for them.

CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: Ladera Community Church Preschool, 3300 Alpine Road, Portola Valley; Woodland School (also a private elementary school), 360 La Cuesta Drive, Portola Valley LOCATION: West of Alpine Road and north of Westridge Drive to Lucero Way and La Cuesta Road PRIVATE SCHOOLS: Woodland School, 360 La Cuesta Drive, Portola Valley PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Las Lomitas School District — Las Lomitas School, 299 Alameda de las Pulgas, Atherton; La Entrada School, 2200 Sharon Road, Menlo Park Sequoia Union High School District — Menlo Atherton High School, 555 Middlefield Road, Atherton SHOPPING: Ladera Country Shopper MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $1,980,000 ($1,075,000-$2,200,000) HOMES SOLD: 12

It is “very much like a neighborhood of the ‘50s,” she says. The Plume’s children make use of the Ladera Recreation Center as members of the swim team in the summer and take tennis lessons at the center. Overall, she couldn’t be happier with the choice they made to live in Ladera, she says. — Kate Daly and Karen Canty


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PORTOLA VALLEY RANCH

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NEIGHBORHOODS

idden away on the edge of the old valley, near where Alpine and Los Trancos roads intersect and Portola Road ends, lies the planned community known as Portola Valley Ranch. The houses, their natural wood exteriors and earthy colors are visually harmonious, in keeping with developer Joe Whelan’s award-winning 1975 design plan. An active homeowner’s association administers the lush common areas and shared recreational facilities, including a community ranch house capable of holding more than 100 people, two swimming pools, three tennis courts, a wine producing vineyard, vegetable gardens and dedicated hiking trails. Longtime Portola Valley Ranch resident Sheldon Breiner is an avid hiker (he describes himself as “peripatetic”) and values the site’s natural setting and the totally natural landscape plan — all foliage, both existing and newly planted, are restricted to native plants, despite changes in ownership. Dr. Breiner, a sort of hi-tech Renaissance man who’s a writer, amateur explorer, as well as successful Silicon Valley inventor/ entrepreneur — Geometrics is one of his better-known startups — says there’s a rewarding visual continuity from the forested open space to the design of the

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FACTS CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS:

residential clusters. “But I couldn’t resist using my Stanford geophysics skills in adding earthquake stability elements to the mandatory house plan when my wife Mimi and I moved here in 1978,” he says. He also has written about Portola Valley history. “Part of the old Bovet Ranch, the forerunner of PV Ranch, is still here, hidden away; the old stable is there too. To safeguard it, I can’t tell you exactly where.” Barbara Wertheimer is a 17-year resident who loves her neighborhood. The neighborhood gets together the first Friday of every month and people who live on different streets bring drinks outside and meet with neighbors, she says. “There is also a hiking group that hikes the first Saturday [of each month]. It’s a very nice community and very comfortable to live in. I’ve never met anyone who isn’t nice,” she says. Marilyn Walter has lived at the Ranch since 1975 and is involved with maintaining the native landscape along hiking trails. “I love the quiet — I love the natural surroundings. We’ve been very fortunate because we have a wooded area on one side and we’re up against Windy Hill on the other. We’re surrounded by open space,” she says. — Phyllis Butler

Windmill Preschool, 4141 Alpine Road, Portola Valley; Ladera Community Church Preschool, 3300 Alpine Road, Portola Valley; Carillon Preschool at Christ Church, 815 Portola Road, Portola Valley; New Horizons (after school care), 200 Shawnee Pass, Portola Valley FIRE STATION: Woodside Fire Protection District, Portola Valley Station, 135 Portola Road, Portola Valley LOCATION: South and east of Alpine Road and west of Los Trancos Road NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION: Portola Valley Ranch Association, Pete Steiner, president PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Portola Valley School District — Ormondale School (K-3), 200 Shawnee Pass, Portola Valley; Corte Madera School (4-8), 4575 Alpine Road, Portola Valley Sequoia Union High School District — Woodside High School, 199 Churchill Ave., Woodside SHOPPING: Nathhorst Triangle, Portola Road at Alpine Road; Village Square, 884 Portola Road; Ladera Shopping Center, 3130 Alpine Road, Portola Valley MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $2,225,000 ($2,150,000-$2,300,000) HOMES SOLD: 2


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NEIGHBORHOODS

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hen Lorraine and Noble Hancock moved to the Westridge neighborhood in 1957, Mapache Drive stopped at their house on the third lot. The neighborhood retained its rural, small-town feel as development continued, with a sense of camaraderie that Mrs. Hancock says came from local mothers’ coffee dates and shared efforts to pick neighborhood children up from school. “In the first five years, there were many children of the same age, and it was a treat for our five children and for all of the mothers at home.” Developed back in the 1920s after serving as ranch land, Westridge is an oasis that feels far removed from the hustle and cramped conditions of Silicon Valley. Each lot in the rolling hills and oak-tree dotted neighborhood is a minimum of 2.5 acres, and bridle path easements on each property preserve the open-space feel. “Originally, the neighborhood catered strongly to horse owners, and so each lot has natural trails for horse rides. There aren’t as many horses anymore, but now the trails are being used by others,” Mrs. Hancock says. More than ten miles of trail attract hikers, bicyclists, and riders. Keeping the natural allure of Westridge alive is a priority for the residents’ association, which sponsors annual clean-up days

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FACTS and a picnic and barbecue as well as holding an annual meeting in the winter. “We cherish our open spaces, and I regret that some people have been digging out the natural landscaping and digging wells,” Mrs. Hancock says. Homebuilders must adhere to strict design guidelines enforced by the Westridge Architectural Supervising Committee, which aims at preserving the rural character of the neighborhood. Adaline Jessup, who was 26 when she moved to Westridge Drive with her pediatrician husband in 1951, has seen the community evolve since its early days. She has hosted around 60 students, mostly medical students, in the apartment off of her garage. She and her husband chose Westridge for its openness and natural space, which she and her husband picnicked on before they decided to develop a lot. “We had two children when we moved in, and promptly got a dog. Then came the sheep, goats, and chicken, and even a boarded a horse.” While the neighborhood has since become more developed, grasslands have grown wooded, and the demographics have changed, Westridge is again attracting new families. “Kids kind of disappeared for awhile,” Mrs. Jessup says “Now there are many kids, and it makes me realize how much I missed hearing children’s voices.” — Sarah Trauben

CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: Windmill Preschool, 4141 Alpine Road, Portola Valley; Ladera Community Church Preschool, 3300 Alpine Road, Portola Valley; Carillon Preschool at Christ Church, 815 Portola Road, Portola Valley; New Horizons (after school care), 200 Shawnee Pass, Portola Valley FIRE STATION: Woodside Fire Protection District, Portola Valley Station, 135 Portola Road, Portola Valley LOCATION: Westridge Drive between Alpine and Portola roads NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION: Westridge Architecture Supervising Committee PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Portola Valley School District — Ormondale School (K-3), 200 Shawnee Pass, Portola Valley; Corte Madera School (4-8), 4575 Alpine Road, Portola Valley Sequoia Union High School District — Woodside High School, 199 Churchill Ave., Woodside SHOPPING: Nathhorst Triangle, Portola Road at Alpine Road; Village Square, 884 Portola Road; Ladera Shopping Center, 3130 Alpine Road, Portola Valley MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $2,895,000 ($1,300,000-$5,125,000) HOMES SOLD: 3


NEIGHBORHOODS

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ore and more people have been relocating to the rural retreat of Woodside Highlands, drawn to the open feel and beautiful views. Beginning at Portola Road and stretching through the Hayfields pastures, the small community once acted as a summer getaway for San Franciscans in the 1920s. A notable feature of the area is the Larry Lane Trail, a hiking trail that winds through the oak trees to overlook the San Francisco Bay. “I just love the weather here, I love the environment,” says 20-year-old resident Paul Swietek, who values using the hiking trail. Mr. Swietek has lived in Woodside Highlands all his life, and hopes to one day buy his family home. The Woodside Highlands Improvement Association is an important asset to the neighborhood as it keeps the roads safe and brings neighbors together. According to Mr. Swietek many of the roads are safe, but some are too narrow, remembering a scary moment when he was run off the road. He participates in what he referred

FACTS

to as “Road Day,” the street-clearing event. The community bonds through the bi-annual road clean-ups that help keep Woodside Highlands drivers safe through each season. Neighbors gather to clear debris from the roads and trim overhanging branches to prevent accidents, says resident Ann Willard. “It’s a very nice neighborhood and most people are interested in keeping up their property,” Ms. Willard says. Ms. Willard, who has lived in Woodside Highlands for 18 years, finds other ways to stay connected with her neighbors. She and her husband host an annual Christmas party at their house. They also enjoy attending community barbecues each fall. “It’s kind of been a traditional thing, it’s been going on since before we were here,” she says. — Kelly Jones

CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: Windmill Preschool, 4141 Alpine Road, Portola Valley; Ladera Community Church Preschool, 3300 Alpine Road, Portola Valley; Carillon Preschool at Christ Church, 815 Portola Road, Portola Valley; New Horizons (after school care), 200 Shawnee Pass, Portola Valley FIRE STATION: Woodside Fire Protection District, Portola Valley Station, 135 Portola Road, Portola Valley LOCATION: Portola Road and Wayside Road to Santa Maria and Russell avenues NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION: Woodside Highlands Improvement Association, president, Richard Crevelt, 650-851-4518 PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Portola Valley School District — Ormondale School (K-3), 200 Shawnee Pass, Portola Valley; Corte Madera School (4-8), 4575 Alpine Road, Portola Valley Sequoia Union High School District — Woodside High School, 199 Churchill Ave., Woodside SHOPPING: Nathhorst Triangle, Portola Road at Alpine Road; Village Square, 884 Portola Road; Ladera Shopping Center, 3130 Alpine Road, Portola Valley MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $1,750,000 ($855,000-$2,400,000)

NEIGHBORHOODS

HOMES SOLD: 3

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NEIGHBORHOODS

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www.275Josselyn.com

www.WoodsideCountryHome.com

www.3460Tripp.com

Offered at $9,200,000

Offered at $5,695,000

Offered at $3,095,000

Custom Home Built in 2008 in Burlingame’s Sought-After Easton Addition

www.515Moore.com

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Offered at $3,295,000

Offered at $6,495,000

Offered at $2,495,000

SOLD

PARTIAL LIST OF ERIKA’S 2012 SALES Skyline Boulevard, Woodside Kings Mountain Road, Woodside Skywood Way, Woodside South Castanya, Portola Valley La Mesa Drive, Portola Valley Alpine Road, Portola Valley Alpine Road, Portola Valley Shoshone Place, Portola Valley Almendral Avenue, Atherton Hermosa Way, Menlo Park Beresford Avenue, Redwood City Santa Clara Avenue, Redwood City Edgewood Road, Redwood City Castillo Avenue, Burlingame Fulton Road, San Mateo Havenhurst Drive, Los Altos

SOLD

Resort-like 3-Acre Estate with Gorgeous Views and Guest Lodge; Minutes to Downtown

SALES LIST

Unique Woodside Opportunity on 3+ Acres with 3,000 +/– sq. ft. Guest House

Offered at $6,595,000

NEIGHBORHOODS

SOLD

Fabulous Central Woodside Property with Updated Home on 1+ Flat Acre

SOLD

Country Estate in Central Woodside on 3 +/– acres with Pool, Barn, Arena

SOLD

Private Woodside Estate on 8.9 Acres with Stunning Views; Plans for a Remodel or New Home

Sprawling Woodside Estate on 3 Flat Acres with Pool, Guest House and Stunning Views

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FOR SALE

FOR SALE

FOR SALE

EXCEPTIONAL PROPERTIES

Classic Traditional Home with Pool, Spa and Guest House, +/– 1 Acre in Woodside www.740WestCalifornia.com Offered at $2,995,000

650.740.2970

Specializing in:

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WOODSIDE, ATHERTON, PORTOLA VALLEY, MENLO PARK, EMERALD HILLS...and surrounding areas

#1 Agent, Woodside Office, 2008, 2009, & 2011

U

Top U.S. Realtor, The Wall Street Journal, 2011

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This information was supplied by Seller and/or other sources. Broker believes this information to be correct but has not verified this information and assumes no legal responsibility for its accuracy. Buyers should investigate these issues to their own satisfaction.


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FACTS

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estates. Their ranks included coffee tycoon James Folger, lumber baron C.F.A. Talbot, heirs to the H.M. Newhall land and cattle fortune, as well as millionaire spice magnate August Schilling. But it wasn’t until the post World War II building boom brought more than 500 new houses to the area that local residents decided to get together to protect the rural nature of their community. In 1956, the Town of Woodside was incorporated, bringing road maintenance, management, planning and zoning under local control.

POPULATION (2011): 5,486 HOUSEHOLDS (2011): 1,914 SINGLE-FAMILY HOUSING (2010): 74.6 percent MEDIAN HOME PRICE: $1,623,250 MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOME (2007-11): $214,300

NEIGHBORHOODS

merald Hills Family Farm/Hidden Valley Kings Mountain/Skyline Mountain Home Road Skywood/ Skylonda Woodside Glens For more than 100 years, beginning in the 1830s, the area now called Woodside was gradually developed, first as sawmills that supplied redwood to build San Francisco, later as farms, small cattle ranches and vineyards. As early as 1852, a regular stagecoach service connected Woodside to San Francisco, and by the 1880s, prosperous San Franciscans began building country

TOWN OPERATING BUDGET: $5.65 million

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KINGS MOUNTAIN

A

NEIGHBORHOODS

lthough the homes of the redwoodstudded enclave of Kings Mountain are spread out, residents say the community is very tight-knit. “There’s a feeling of espirt de corps in the neighborhood,” says Carol Forster, a resident since 1966. The higher altitude on Kings Mountain can lead to more severe weather than in other parts of the region, but life in the well-appointed community among the redwoods attracts a wide range of residents. “We were cautioned about the weather patterns and do get more rain and wind than San Mateo does, but the atmosphere, views and greenery more than make up for it,” Mrs. Forster says. “Some people have simply wonderful views of the Peninsula and the ocean.” The neighborhood attracts hikers and Sierra Club enthusiasts who “are quite invested in nature,” she says. Nonetheless, residents don’t sacrifice community investment to live in the lowdensity community. Among community organizations are the Kings Mountain Association, a monthly newspaper called The Echo, and a resident-run volunteer fire brigade that protects Kings Mountain. A Yahoo group keeps the community connected, where residents can post neighborhood updates or ask for help with issues. Whether a tree has fallen, a resident has welcomed a new baby or a resident has put out the word about something up for sale, Kings Mountain residents keep informed, Mrs. Forster says. Sheena Mawson, former president of the Kings Mountain Association, also praises the Yahoo group. “Recently someone needed a ride to the airport and in less than 30 minutes they had a ride arranged, just by asking for help on the board,” she says. “I love knowing that if there were ever a crisis, the community would come together

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FACTS

and get through it together.” According to Ms. Mawson, cell reception, Internet connections and reliable cable were sometimes difficult to find on the Mountain in the past, but service access has improved. Power outages can still be a problem, Mrs. Forster notes. What the area lacks in reliable cell reception residents make up for with community events, they said. The Mawsons say the Kings Mountain Association hosts five major events each year: a Halloween Party, a holiday party featuring Santa, spring brunch, an annual dinner, and a summer barbecue, which kicks off the Kings Mountain Art Fair. The Art Fair is hosted in Kings Mountain over the Labor Day weekend to benefit the Kings Mountain Volunteer Fire Brigade, the award-winning elementary school in Cabrillo School District and the Kings Mountain Association, Mrs. Forster says. The all-volunteer event features paintings, jewelry and ceramics from a variety of artists who are selected by an art fair jury. Between the natural beauty of the area and the array of community activities and cooperation, residents of Kings Mountain say they love where they live. “We’re all very proud of where we live,” Mrs. Forster says. — Kelly Jones

CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: Kings Mountain Children’s Center at Kings Mountain School, 211 Swett Road, Woodside FIRE STATION: CDF Skylonda Station, 17290 Skyline Blvd., Woodside; Kings Mountain Fire Brigade, 13889 Skyline Blvd., Woodside LOCATION: surrounding Skyline Boulevard and Kings Mountain Road around Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION: Kings Mountain Association, Sheena Mawson, president, 650-346-9993 PARK: Huddart County Park, 1100 Kings Mountain Road, Woodside; Wunderlich County Park, 4040 Woodside Road, Woodside; Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve, Skyline Boulevard, Half Moon Bay PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Cabrillo Unified School District -- Kings Mtn. Elementary School, 211 Swett Road, Woodside; Cunha Intermediate School, Kelly Avenue and Church Street, Half Moon Bay; Half Moon Bay High School, Half Moon Bay Woodside Elementary School District — Woodside Elementary School, 3195 Woodside Road, Woodside Sequoia Union High School District — Woodside High School, 199 Churchill Ave., Woodside SHOPPING: Crystal Springs Shopping Center, Half Moon Bay shopping district, Woodside MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $695,000 ($460,000-$1,326,000) HOMES SOLD: 5


a p r. c o m

DIANE CHESLER

QUETZAL GRIMM

650.888.7899 dchesler@apr.com

650.400.7879 quetzal@apr.com

DRE#00675583

DRE#01405453

Where we live, life is about living with substance and style.

NEIGHBORHOODS

a p r. c o m | W O O D S I D E 2 9 3 0 Wo o d s i d e R o a d

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estled in the Santa Cruz Mountains at the intersection of highways 35 (Skyline Boulevard) and 84 (Woodside Road), the communities of Skywood and Skylonda perch high above the rest of the Peninsula, with sweeping Bay and woodland views. With their neighborhoods bordering such outdoor treasures as the La Honda and Thornewood open space preserves and Wunderlich County Park, residents say Skywood and Skylonda can’t be beat for nature lovers looking to make their home in the secluded Coast Range while still enjoying (relatively) quick access to the bustling Silicon Valley world below. “We have fabulous views. More than half the homes here have an incredible view of the bay and the others have the woods,” says Kathleen Braunstein, a Skywood resident Skywood is a planned community (within Woodside borders, but kids go to Portola Valley schools) of around 80 homes, each of which has 1.5 to 3 acres of land, insuring a rural, peaceful home atmosphere. The homes are all custom built.

FACTS

Unincorporated Skylonda, across the highway, has fewer homes, including some log cabins, and is more of a “hodgepodge” of rustic styles, she says. “There are a lot of unique styles, but each has to fit into the environment and be friendly to the layout of the properties and hillsides,” Ms. Braunstein says. Skywood home designs must be approved by the local design committee, she adds. Though it may seem remote from the rest of the world, there is a real sense of community among neighbors. An active homeowner’s association holds an annual picnic, barbecue or event of some kind and maintains a community website. Residents enjoy monthly get togethers, Ms. Braunstein says, and the community association hosts happy hours in Skylonda. The demographics have changed somewhat for the community since she moved to Skywood in 1978, “There’s greater variety. It’s much more a cross section of ages and interests,” she says.

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NEIGHBORHOODS

LOCATION: South of Wunderlich County Park between Highway 84 and La Honda Open Space Preserve NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION: Skywood Association: Matt Richter, 650-529-9793; Skylonda Area Association PARK: Wunderlich County Park, 4040 Woodside Road, Woodside PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Portola Valley School District -- Ormondale School, 200 Shawnee Pass Road, Portola Valley; Corte Madera School, 4575 Alpine Road, Portola Valley Sequoia Union High School District -Woodside High School, 199 Churchill Avenue, Woodside SHOPPING: Four Corners, Highways 84 and 35, Woodside Road, Woodside and Redwood City MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $1,405,000 ($569,000-$4,750,000) HOMES SOLD: 20

— Karla Kane

WOODSIDE HEIGHTS oodside Heights is a quiet residential neighborhood sandwiched in the southwestern corner of Woodside Road and Alameda de las Pulgas, next to Woodside High School. “The neighborhood character combines a rural feel with maintained convenience to 280, resident Regan Avery says. Some drivers cut through the neighborhood, which has no sidewalks, to bypass traffic congestion around the school. Nonetheless, stop signs discourage speeding on the popular loop on Eleanor and Northgate drives. The big draw of the neighborhood is a one-mile loop popular for strollers. Neighbors pass by each other and meet to chat, Avery says. Regan and Brenda Avery have two children in high school and one in college. When they bought their ranch-style home on the cul-de-sac, Eugenia Lane, in 1993, Mrs. Avery says she felt like they were one of the few families with young children. “It was kind of an older neighborhood,” she says, but now their home is known as 70 “party central” on Halloween for kids of all

FIRE STATION: 3111 Woodside Road, Woodside

FACTS

ages. She estimates about 200 people come through their haunted house before dark, then go off in groups to trick-or-treat. “It’s a nice mix of families and retired people, and everyone in between, Mr. Avery adds, noting a demographic shift. He serves as treasurer for the neighborhood association, which helps coordinate the Halloween celebration and also organizes two potlucks each year at which neighbors connect with each other. “The committee is very active in promoting a neighborhood feeling,” Mr. Avery says. The Averys have noticed a fair amount of construction on the 1- to 3-acre lots in Woodside Heights. Several homes on Northgate have been rebuilt, replacing their 1950s predecessors. But the neighborhood features a wide range of architectural designs in keeping with Woodside conventions. “There’s a very nice range of styles, including some new homes that have built built recently but kept within the guidelines of the town.” — Kate Daly

CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS: Woodside Parents’ Nursery School, 3154 Woodside Road, Woodside; Woodside Preschool, 3195 Woodside Road, Woodside FIRE STATION: 3111 Woodside Road, Woodside LOCATION: South of Woodside Road and Alameda de las Pulgas adjacent to Woodside High School to Stockbridge Avenue and Eleanor Drive NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION: Woodside Heights Neighborhood Association, Elke Muller, president, 650-369-2422 PARK: Huddart County Park, 1100 Kings Mountain Road, Woodside; Wunderlich County Park, 4040 Woodside Road, Woodside PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Las Lomitas School District — Las Lomitas School, 299 Alameda de las Pulgas, Atherton; La Entrada School, 2200 Sharon Road, Redwood City School District — 750 Bradford Street, Redwood City; Sequoia Union High School District — Woodside High School, 199 Churchill Avenue, Woodside MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $1,900,000 ($1,388,000-$3,000,000) HOMES SOLD: 7


REPRESENTING BUYERS & SELLERS of Fine City & Country Properties IN WOODSIDE AND SURROUNDING COMMUNITIES

“Janis was never pushy, had great knowledge of the market, and was a wonderful partner in our decision making process.”

“Janis was professional and very organized. She treated my home as if it were hers. I trust her completely.”

“The first words that come to mind to describe Janis are quality, integrity, and professionalism.”

- Buyers & Sellers, Palo Alto

- Sellers, Woodside

- Sellers, Woodside

Janis Friedenberg BROKER ASSOCIATE PREVIEWS PROPERTY SPECIALIST

650.346.8690 Janis@JanisGrube.com www.JanisGrube.com DRE# 01365341

JANIS F. GRUBE

NEIGHBORHOODS

GRUBE

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WOODSIDE GLENS

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ith its redwood trees, creek, wildflower preserve and narrow, winding roads, the hilly Woodside Glens neighborhood feels like country, but is just minutes away from Woodside’s commercial center and Interstate 280. The Glens’ 80 acres were originally developed as vacation homes for San Franciscans seeking summer sunshine. A 1925 Woodside Glens ad in the San Francisco Chronicle mentions “cabin site lots for $250 and up.” Because of small lot sizes and steep slopes, many of the homes, erected in the 1920s and 1930s, were built on two or more adjoining lots. “Our house was built on five combined lots,” says caterer Doris Coonrad, a resident of the Glens for 40 years. She and her husband, who were house sitting in the Glens after returning from seven years living in West Africa, found a cabin for sale just across the street. They decided it would be the ideal place to teach their four teenagers how to build a house.

FACTS

“It kept them busy for three summers,” says Ms. Coonrad. “Even their friends joined in, it was so much fun.” She loves living in the Glens. “It’s friendly. It’s safe — there’s not a lot of through traffic. It’s close to a good school and you can buy a home for less money than almost anywhere else in Woodside,” she says. Centered around Glenwood Avenue off Canada Road, the Glens seems to be attracting more young families, says Ms. Coonrad. In the 1990s Maria Quimby formed the “Glens Moms” as a “girls night out” for young mothers, often isolated at home. Now known as Glens Neighbors, the group organizes family events: a back-to-school party, pizza supper and Halloween party, summer picnics, and Christmas caroling. Susan Doherty, who has taken over the reins for the Neighbors, has lived in the Glens for 13 years. She joined the group when her 9-year-old twins were born. “This is one of the best neighborhoods for children. The kids can ride their bikes all

WOODSIDE HILLS

NEIGHBORHOODS

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rant Huberty grew up in Woodside Hills in a simpler time — when Interstate 280 didn’t run through Woodside, when there were no fences between homes and views went forever because the only trees in the neighborhood were native oaks, and when there were fruit orchards on Woodside Road. Things have changed, but a few years ago, when Mr. Huberty had a chance to move back into Woodside Hills after 25 years of living elsewhere, he took it. He and his wife, Carol Welsh, are now living in the house Mr. Huberty grew up in. “My wife and I remodelled it to make it ours,” he says. “I’ve always liked Woodside. It’s got a desire to stay rural,” Mr. Huberty says. In fact, he says, the town may even be “a little less polished than some people like” since it still has no sidewalks and no street lights. Another thing he has always loved about his neighborhood is the fact that his home, like many in Woodside Hills, has a view. “I like to be up the hill. I like the view,” Mr.

CHILD CARE & PRESCHOOLS Woodside Parents’ Nursery School, 3154 Woodside Road, Woodside; Woodside Preschool, 3195 Woodside Road, Woodside FIRE STATION: 3111 Woodside Road, Woodside LOCATION: Hwy. 280 and Canada Road and Glenwood Avenue to Alto Road PARK: Huddart County Park, 1100 Kings Mountain Road, Woodside; Wunderlich County Park, 4040 Woodside Road, Woodside PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Woodside Elementary School District — Woodside Elementary School, 3195 Woodside Road, Woodside; Sequoia Union High School District — Woodside High School, 199 Churchill Ave., Woodside SHOPPING: Woodside Road, Woodside MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $1,425,000 ($888,800-$2,890,000) HOMES SOLD: 13

over. They never want to move. They want to stay here with their friends,” she says. —Kathy Schrenk

FACTS

Huberty said. “I grew up being able to look out the view.” Another advantage of the neighborhood of about 250 homes is that the lots are large. “We enjoy the space,” Mr. Huberty says. While he has plenty of neighbors, they are far enough apart to give each home a sense of privacy. Mr. Huberty is the treasurer and on the board of the Woodside Hills Homes Association. He replaced Perry Vartanian, who retired after 28 years on the association’s board. The Woodside Hills Homes Association sponsors a big social event for all the neighbors each year, and holds an annual meeting. Association dues are less than $100 per year and go toward maintaining the landscaping of the formal entry and 25 traffic islands in the neighborhood. The association also has an architectural board that must approve any new home or remodeling plans in addition to the town of Woodside. — Barbara Wood

CHILDCARE & PRESCHOOLS: Woodside Parents’ Nursery School, 3154 Woodside Road, Woodside; Woodside Preschool, 3195 Woodside Road, Woodside FIRE STATION: 3111 Woodside Road, Woodside LOCATION: north of Woodside Road and Interstate 280 between Canada College and Menlo Country Club to Las Pulgas Road NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION: [http://www. woodsidehills.org Woodside Hills] PARK: Huddart County Park. 1100 Kings Mountain Road, Woodside; Wunderlich County Park, 4040 Woodside Road, Woodside PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Redwood City School District — Henry Ford School, 2498 Massachusetts, Redwood City; Kennedy Middle School, 2521 Goodwin Ave., Redwood City; plus magnet schools Sequoia Union High School District — Woodside High School, 199 Churchill Ave., Woodside MEDIAN 2012 HOME PRICE: $2,327,500 (1,650,000-$3,300,000) HOMES SOLD: 8


MARGOT LOCKWOOD 650.529.2410 Office 650.400.2528 Cell h o m e s @ m a r go t l o c k wo o d . co m

NG I D PEN

320 JANE DRIVE CENTRAL WOODSIDE

2425 TASSO, PALO ALTO

128 HUCKLEBERRY TRAIL, WOODSIDE

PRICE UPON REQUEST

Offered at $999,000

Offered at $699,000

s Private contemporary home on6.2 acres with views of the western hills in central Woodside. s 5 bedrooms 4.5 bath beautifully updated. Frml LR, Fam/kitch, multi-purpose rm & library.

Spacious lr/dr with fireplace and opens to patio & yard. 2nd bath is split with toilet/ shower with sink in bedroom. Bonus/office has washer/dryer. Garage at rear of property. Hardwood floors in most of the house. 7400 sq ft lot on dead end street.

Wonderful county style 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths approx. 2000 sq ft built in 2005. Separate office/bonus room on property including 2nd half bath. Large 10,000 sq. ft level lot.

THANKS FOR ANOTHER SUCCESSFUL YEAR WOODSIDE

WOODSIDE

WOODSIDE

WOODSIDE

WOODSIDE

WOODSIDE

WOODSIDE

WOODSIDE

WOODSIDE

WOODSIDE

WOODSIDE

PORTOLA VALLEY

PORTOLA VALLEY

MENLO PARK

REDWOOD CITY

REDWOOD CITY

REDWOOD CITY

SAN CARLOS

MOUNTAIN VIEW

For more information or Virtual Tour visit www.margotlockwood.com

NEIGHBORHOODS

WOODSIDE

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Menlo Park Atherton Palo Alto Los Altos Woodside Portola Valley

SUE CRAWFORD

(650) 566-5341

NEIGHBORHOODS

scrawford@cbnorcal.com www.suecrawford.com

74

1377 El Camino Real Menlo Park, CA 94025

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