85 reasons WEEKEND | P.13
FEBRUARY 19, 2010 VOLUME 18, NO. 7
INSIDE: MOVIES | PAGE 16
Plane crash kills three, knocks out power to region By Kelsey Mesher
ountain View’s neighboring city to the north was all but shut down Wednesday after a small passenger plane crashed in East Palo Alto, killing all three people aboard the plane and causing a large-scale power outage throughout the city of Palo Alto. The plane, a twin-engine Cessna 310R, came down at 7:55 a.m. Wednesday morning at Beech and Pulgas streets. FAA officials said it had just taken off at Palo Alto Airport and was headed to Southern California. The plane’s pilot and two pas-
Bernice Turner and other neighbors watch at the scene where a Cessna crashed into a residential neighborhood in East Palo Alto. MICHELLE LE
Developer would restore, lease out Hangar One By Daniel DeBolt
major Emeryville-based real estate developer is proposing to restore Moffett Field’s historic Hangar One, which — if the government allows it — could save the landmark building after its toxic siding is removed in November. Eddie Orton, president of Orton Development, says he has a “realistic” plan to restore the NASA-owned hangar, which has sat vacant for years after toxic dust from its asbestos-laden siding was found inside. “We are a really successful company and we don’t need the money,” Orton said. “We do honor that building. It deserves a certain respect from all of us.
It is an extraordinary asset — we can either destroy it or we can use it.” Orton said he would not reveal the details of much of his restoration plan until he is allowed to bid on the project in a process open to other developers. But his proposal, made in a letter to Congresswoman Anna Eshoo, the Navy and NASA, mentions an initial design allowing a “diversity” of uses inside the massive hangar, which has a floor the size of 10 football fields. It says those uses could include a museum, meeting rooms, offices, research and development, light industrial, a public venue and “missionSee HANGAR ONE, page 8
sengers, all employees of the Tesla electric car company, were confirmed dead. There were no injuries or fatalities on the ground. Emergency officials said the outage had little direct impact on Mountain View, although “If they need help we’re standing by,” said Lynn Brown, Fire Department spokesman and emergency specialist. “We’re going to send as much as they need.” The plane was under a dense fog advisory with zero to onequarter-mile visibility when it took off. One witness told KTVU that the plane clipped a transmission tower before crashing into the ground. Authorities said the plane knocked out a transmission tower as well as a utility tower and power lines. Non-localized transmission lines were cut off, See CRASH, page 7
Google pressures city over plan for North Bayshore COMPANY TELLS MOUNTAIN VIEW OFFICIALS IT WANTS AREA TO BE ‘SUSTAINABLE FOR GOOGLE’ By Daniel DeBolt
oogle executives are weighing in on an ongoing discussion over the future of the company’s North Bayshore neighborhood, with representatives at Tuesday’s City Council meeting following up on a letter sent last week to city officials which calls for more homes, stores and infrastructure to be developed near the Internet giant’s headquarters. David Radcliffe, Google’s real estate director, sent the
GOINGS ON 17 | MARKETPLACE 18 | REAL ESTATE 21 | VIEWPOINT 12
letter last Thursday, briefly outlining the company’s goals for a “future redevelopment” of its headquarters, which include the creation of new homes in the area, presumably for its employees. The current “Googleplex” is centered around three-story buildings built by Silicon Graphics in the 1990s, and has grown to include most of the office buildings on nearby blocks. Two weeks ago, City Council members and planning commissioners supported
allowing Google and other companies to build six- and seven-story buildings in the North Bayshore area, which is bordered by Highway 101 to the south and east and Stevens Creek to the west. But after considering allowing the construction of new homes and storefronts in Google’s neighborhood along Shoreline Boulevard — a possible way to curtail car trips in and out of North Bayshore, which only has two access roads — the See GOOGLE, page 9
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■ MOUNTAIN VIEW VOICE ■ FEBRUARY 19, 2010
7PJDFT A R O U N D
T O W N
Asked in Downtown Mountain View. Pictures and interviews by Dana Sherne.
How do you like Google’s new social media tool, Google Buzz? “It kind of seems like Instant Messenger. I haven’t played around with it enough to know. It looks like they took Wave and simplified it.” Mike Tillson, Redwood City
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Community Meeting Notice Del Medio Park You are invited to a Community Meeting to discuss the design of a new neighborhood mini-park on Del Medio Avenue. The park will be located on City-owned property on Del Medio Avenue between California Street and Miller Avenue (see map below). The purpose of the meeting is to gather input from the neighborhood on what features to include in the park. The meeting will be held at the following time and location: Monday, February 22, 2010 7:30 P.M. – 9:30 P.M. Community School of Music and Arts (CSMA) 230 San Antonio Circle Mountain View If you have any questions prior to the meeting, please contact Anne Marie Starr, Senior Civil Engineer at the Public Works Department at (650) 903-6311.
“It seems like they took a year and a half to try and make a Twitter clone. Just because it’s in my Gmail doesn’t mean I’ll use it.” Lloyd Armbrust, Sunnyvale
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FEBRUARY 19, 2010 ■ MOUNTAIN VIEW VOICE ■
2010 Wallace Stegner Lecture Series
INTO THE NATURAL WORLD
CRIMINAL THREATS 3500 Block Truman Ave., 2/8
Century 16 Cinema, 2/12
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BATTERY 300 Block Castro St., 2/8 1900 Block Latham St., 2/8 700 Block West Middlefield Rd., 2/10 400 Block View St., 2/13 West El Camino Real & El Monte Ave., 2/15
Monday, March 1 8:00 p.m.
AUTO BURGLARY 1900 Block Fordham Way, 2/8 1500 Block North Shoreline Blvd., 2/8 1200 Block Dale Ave., 2/10 900 Block North Rengstorff Ave., 2/12 2400 Block Grant Rd., 2/14 1800 Block Appletree Ln., 2/14 East Evelyn Ave. & Pioneer Way, 2/14 200 Block Escuela Ave., 2/14 200 Block Escuela Ave., 2/15
Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts 500 Castro Street, Mountain View
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COMMERCIAL BURGLARY 500 Block Showers Dr., 2/9 400 Block San Antonio Rd., 2/9 400 Block North Bernardo Way, 2/10 2300 Block California St., 2/12
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NARCOTICS POSSESSION Leghorn St. & North Rengstorff Ave., 2/13
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POSSESSION OF STOLEN PROPERTY Castro St. & West El Camino Real, 2/15
PETTY THEFT Century 16 Cinema, 2/8 Nob Hill Foods, 2/8 1500 Block North Shoreline Blvd., 2/8 Lucky- East El Camino Real, 2/10 Terra Bella Academy, 2/10 Sears Department Store, 2/12 100 Block Bryant St., 2/13 1000 Block West El Camino Real, 2/14 200 Block Castro St., 2/14 1400 Block West El Camino Real, 2/15 2100 Block California St., 2/15
DISTURBANCE West El Camino Real, 2/12
DISORDERLY CONDUCT: ALCOHOL
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To include your Church in Inspirations Please call Blanca Yoc at 650-326-8210 ext. 6596 or e-mail email@example.com ■ MOUNTAIN VIEW VOICE ■ FEBRUARY 19, 2010
PETTY THEFT WITH PRIOR Rite Aid - San Antonio Rd., 2/15 Sears Department Store, 2/15
600 Block Taylor Ct., 2/8 Murlagan Ave. & Tyrella Ave., 2/8 2500 Block California St., 2/9 Residence Inn, 2/10 West Evelyn Ave. & Hope St., 2/10 1900 Block Latham St., 2/13 1000 Block West El Camino Real, 2/14 Castro St. & Villa St., 2/14
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2200 Block Rock St., 2/9 300 Block View St., 2/11 500 Block South Rengstorff Ave., 2/10 300 Block View St., 2/15
EMBEZZLEMENT 24 Hour Fitness - California St., 2/9
2300 Block California St., 2/8
UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF A CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE Safeway - North Shoreline Blvd., 2/11 7-11 - Pear, 2/13
Pastor David K. Bonde Outreach Pastor Gary Berkland
POSSESSION OF MARIJUANA FOR SALE
The Mountain View Voice is published every Friday by Embarcadero Publishing Co. 450 Cambridge Ave, Palo Alto CA 94306 (650) 964-6300. Application to Mail at Periodicals Postage Rates is Pending at Palo Alto, CA and additional mailing offices. The Mountain View Voice is mailed free to homes and apartments in Mountain View. Subscription rate of $60 per year. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Mountain View Voice, 450 Cambridge Ave, Palo Alto, CA 94306.
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■ CITY COUNCIL UPDATES ■ COMMUNITY ■ FEATURES
Moffett wind tunnel used to test trucks’ wind resistance
Panelists: Region is losing race for federal ‘megainvestments’ By Chris Kenrick
RESEARCH COULD RESULT IN 3.4 BILLION GALLONS SAVED IN ANNUAL FUEL COSTS, SCIENTISTS SAY
Bay City News
wind tunnel at Moffett Field normally used to test airplanes and other things that fly is being used to test the aerodynamics of a big diesel truck, with the intention of saving up to 3.4 billion gallons of fuel a year. The truck will never get off the ground, but reducing wind resistance could save 3.4 billion gallons of diesel fuel each year in the trucking industry, scientists behind the research believe. That translates to $10 billion savings at truck stops across the nation. After more than a decade of research, scientists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory this week unveiled technology to allow the trucks to slide through the wind. At a news conference Tuesday inside a wind tunnel at NASA’s Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, scientists explained how reducing the aerodynamic drag of a semi truck can increase the truck’s fuel efficiency, saving $10 billion in diesel fuel costs annually. Aerodynamic drag is caused by pressure differences around the vehicle, and at highway speeds semi trucks use more than 50 percent of the energy produced by the vehicle engine to overcome that drag, according to scientists. In late January, scientists brought a semi truck to the wind tunnels located at Moffett Field and operated by NASA Ames. There the truck has been undergoing tests, according to Kambiz Salari, a senior scientist at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Scientists have learned that they can increase fuel efficiency by up to 12 percent by making a series of fairly simple changes on trucks, Salari See MOFFETT, page 6
Miguel Landaverde and friends groove to Michael Jackson’s “Smooth Criminal.” Nearly 80 students from Crittenden and Graham middle schools attended “Club 201,” a dance for Mountain View middle school students hosted by the city and held last Friday night at the Mountain View Community Center.
Cops work to keep tabs on sex offenders REGULAR ‘209 SWEEPS’ HELP POLICE PREVENT A REPEAT By Kelsey Mesher
ate last summer, Phillip Garrido, a registered sex offender living in Antioch, and his wife Nancy gained nationwide attention after the discovery of Jaycee Dugard, who police believe had been living for 18 years as a captive in their backyard. Jaycee, police said, also fathered two of Garrido’s children. The story was so heinous that it led many to ask: How could this have
gone unnoticed? Mountain View police say that case is the “rarest of rare,” but concede that “it could happen” anywhere. “Which is why we try to be really diligent with our sex offenders,” said Liz Wylie, spokesperson and former adult sexual assault detective for the Mountain View Police Department. Around the time the Dugard story broke, police in Mountain View were conducting “290 sweeps” — random but routine
checks of registered sex offenders in the city. The number 290 is the penal code for a sex offense, Wylie explained. It is random checks like these, she said, that help police monitor registered sex offenders living in the city, making sure that those at greatest risk for a repeat offense are in compliance with laws and regulations, and on track toward integration into their community. See OFFENDERS, page 11
WORKER AT 24 HOUR FITNESS CHARGED WITH EMBEZZLEMENT Police arrested a 30-year-old Santa Clara woman last Tuesday, Feb. 9 on charges of embezzling a few hundred dollars from the 24 Hour Fitness on California Street where she worked. According to police reports, the woman took cash from her employer amounting to $515 over a threeweek period in January. Police said she was taking cash transactions from customers, then voiding them out and pocketing the money. They said other staffers became suspicious of the voids, and obtained security footage of her in the act. Police were notified Tues-
day at approximately 4:48 p.m., and arrested her on location on charges of felony embezzlement, which applies to thefts of over $400. — Kelsey Mesher
LOS ALTOS POLICE SEEK SUSPECT IN JULY SEX ASSAULT Police in Los Altos are investigating the sexual assault of a teenage girl while she was out jogging in July 2009. The incident occurred July 14 at about 8:30 p.m. near Parma Way and Covington Road, but the victim reported the incident only recently, Sgt. John Korges said. He said victims of sexual crimes sometimes
don’t come forward right away. Citing the juvenile victim’s privacy, Korges declined to give her age but said the girl is in her early teens. The suspect is described as a man in his early 30s, about 5 feet 10 inches tall with a medium build, mustache and short black hair. He was driving a dark green Ford Explorer with a roof rack, tinted passenger windows, Firestone tires and dual exhaust pipes, and a partial license plate of 5KG according to police. Anyone with information is asked to call police Det. Susan Anderson at (650) 947-2770. — Bay City News
ilicon Valley is losing the race for huge federal investments that will jumpstart the industries of the future, a panel of Valley leaders said last week. As the Obama administration makes “a series of mega-investments in the future,” Silicon Valley trails regions such as Huntsville, Ala. in procuring funds, Emmett Carson, CEO of the Mountain View-based Silicon Valley Community Foundation, told more than 1,000 attendees at a 2010 “State of the Valley” conference last Friday in San Jose. The conference was convened by the Community Foundation and Joint Venture: Silicon Valley Network, a nonprofit “analysis and action” group. Carson and others outlined a regional funding gap in clean technologies. He said Silicon Valley is getting none of the $2 billion federal funds now being disbursed for research in vehicle batteries and only $4 million of a $184 million federal investment in energy storage. Silicon Valley got none of the $3.5 billion going to smart-grid technology, and just $38 million of the $16 billion going to energy efficiency and renewable energy, he said. Warning against complacency, he likened the region to the Indianapolis Colts’ overconfidence leading up to the recent Super Bowl game. The Colts lost to the underdog New Orleans Saints. “We’re not the Saints, we’re the favored people,” Carson said. “If we think the game is ours we’re going to have that outcome, and it will be Huntsville celebrating.” Attendees also heard a range of expert analyses of the 2010 Silicon Valley Index, an annual measurement of the region’s wealth and health put forth by Joint Venture (www.jointventure.org). The report, released earlier this month, concluded See INVESTMENTS, page 6
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A look inside a wind tunnel at NASA Ames.
Continued from page 5
said. Those include inserting a gap-seal plate between the truck and the trailer, base flaps on the side of the trailer in the rear, and an under-body device on the base of the trailer that blocks air flow beneath the truck. The technology to reduce the aerodynamic drag still needs up
Continued from page 5
that Silicon Valleyâ€™s dominance as the worldâ€™s innovation hub is â€œat risk as never before.â€? The exhaustive study stated that the rise of countries such as China and India, coupled with Californiaâ€™s legislative gridlock, is â€œdraining the lifeblood of funding and foreign talent from Silicon Valley.â€? Russell Hancock, Joint Ventureâ€™s CEO, announced at the conference that he will create a new position to run â€œspecial
to three years to complete before it can be put on the market, Salari said. But testing the truck in a wind tunnel helps speed up the process. â€œThis is a significant step toward reducing the United Statesâ€™ dependency on fossil fuels,â€? director George Miller of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory said. The wind tunnel, which is
large enough to fit a Boeing 737 plane, became operational in 1987 and functions as a test zone for parachutes, helicopters, planes and other vehicles, according to David Duesterhaus of the Ames Research Center. Wind blows up to 100 knots in the tunnel and can simulate whatever speed is needed, Duesterhaus said.
opsâ€? for procurement of federal investment for Silicon Valley. â€œThe person will travel to Washington, D.C. a lot and mobilize the entire region to advocate and cheerlead for the federal funds we require,â€? Hancock said. The person will report to a steering committee representing Joint Venture, Stanford University, the Silicon Valley Leadership Group and the Bay Area Council, he said. There is a Silicon Valley mythology that could feed overconfidence: That entrepreneurs created it all by themselves, warned Gary Pinkus of McKin-
sey & Co. The reality, he said, is that early companies such as Fairchild Semiconductor secured 80 percent of their original contracts from the Defense Department. He added that â€œCalifornia is arguably a terrible state to do business in relative to other states. We have high taxes and high regulations that weâ€™re going to have to fix in the context of Sacramento.â€?
Chris Kenrick writes for the Palo Alto Weekly, the Voiceâ€™s sister paper.
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Investigators work to assess the damage following a plane crash in East Palo Alto. MICHELLE LE
Continued from page 1
knocking out power to the region, including to homes and Palo Alto businesses and to traffic lights at intersections. Power flickered as far north as Belmont and as far south as San Antonio Road. â€œIt looks like the main transmission line that runs along 101â€? was knocked out, Brown said. â€œItâ€™s the major inlet for (power), so thatâ€™s why itâ€™s such a large area.â€? In Palo Alto, all major retail and businesses were shut down for the day, and traffic lights caused some delays along major roads. The underpass at Embarcadero Road beneath Alma was flooded, reportedly because a pump that keeps the road clear was not running. Stanford Hospital was running on generators, and some
patients were sent elsewhere. Only major surgeries and procedures were being performed. In East Palo Alto, parts of the plane, including a wing, came off and landed on homes, according to Menlo Park Fire Chief Harold Schapelhouman, but the body of the plane landed in the street and skidded a distance. The pieces that fell caused at least two homes to catch fire, he said. Among the buildings hit was that of Lisa Jones, who operates a day care center out of her home. â€œEverybody got out safely,â€? said Pamela Houston, who works there and was feeding an 11-month-old when a piece of the plane hit the house. â€œWe initially heard the boom part of the explosion,â€? she said. â€œAs we were running out of the house we saw the debris falling and hitting other houses.â€? Luckily, she said, only one child
had been dropped off so far that morning. â€œNormally itâ€™s more,â€? she said. â€œWeâ€™re just counting it to the glory and honor of God.â€? Lois Ingram was waiting for her mother, Sandra Watts, who also works at the day care center, to appear from down the roped-off block. She said she had spoken to her mother over the phone, but that sheâ€™s â€œtoo shaken up to say anything right now.â€? Despite serious impact in neighboring cities, Mountain View officials said Wednesday afternoon they had heard no related reports. Brown said the city of Palo Alto is working with the county to determine need for support. â€œI talked to them about half an hour ago and they ... did not have a formal request yetâ€? for help, he said Wednesday. V
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consistent government work.â€? Orton says his firm is in a position to attract tenants to ensure â€œlong term profitabilityâ€? of the project, and he said he already has interest from prospective tenants â€” â€œtwo very significant, very important clients.â€? Ortonâ€™s firm has done 62 redevelopment projects and has â€œ500 tenants in over 50 states. We are constantly talking to the market,â€? he said. The proposal comes just weeks
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