News

Medical complex completion delayed again

Sidewalk still blocked

Click on picture to enlarge and see caption.

By Sandy Brundage

Almanac Staff Writer

Although six weeks ago the manager responsible for overseeing construction of a medical office complex at 1906 El Camino Real said the site would be finished by now, there are few signs of progress. Of key concern to pedestrians -- the cyclone fence still shoves them off the sidewalk and into El Camino Real as cars speed by.

The site also presents a hazard for those waiting to catch a bus, as the temporary bus stop -- a sign mounted in a portable can of concrete -- has now moved to the corner of El Camino Real and Watkins Ave.

On Aug. 5 the site appeared empty and the construction equipment sat idle in the sun. Phil Giurlani, project manager, attributed the latest delay to "doing things out of order," saying the project has slowed down because the focus is on opening the sidewalk sooner rather than later.

Mr. Giurlani said he did not know who moved the bus stop.

Residents sent numerous e-mails to the Menlo Park City Council, demanding action be taken to correct what they view as a hazard. Community Services Director Cherise Brandell responded to the latest missive from Don Barnby, who lives near the site, saying all of the concrete for the sidewalks had now been poured.

"It is our understanding that about 50% of the sidewalk frontage will be finished with tile; according to the developer, the tile installers are scheduled for Tuesday and estimate a completion time of one week," Ms. Brandell wrote in an e-mail.

"Once the tile is done, the developer is willing to cover the small remaining open area with plywood and open the sidewalk. His best estimate is two weeks from now, one week later than my previous email indicated."

Eventually the developer hopes to fill the new two-story, 9,852-square-foot building with medical and dental offices. Residents wonder whether the construction delays are due to financial problems; as of Aug. 5, the amount of late taxes owed on the parcel had risen to $12,732.88, according to the San Mateo County Tax Collector's Office.

Comments

Like this comment
Posted by Bob
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Aug 5, 2010 at 6:15 pm

So if we get hit by car while walking in the street - who do we sue - Giurlani and the City? It's not like there hasn't been notice about the dangers (how many months???).
Maybe Giurlani can get his beh__d out there with a shovel and fill in the holes around the sidewalk himself. I'm sure our City Manager would be happy to help him move the fence.


Like this comment
Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Aug 5, 2010 at 7:40 pm

I'm shocked! NOT. I really don't see what's been done out of order. Let's see, you pour your sidewalks, curb and gutter, then you put your paving in. Except, not all the curb and gutter is in, so guess what? No paving. This developer has run out of money and is scrambling to find more. The city needs to drop the hammer on them before someone gets killed and the citizens have to spend another day looking at this eye sore.


Like this comment
Posted by POGO
a resident of Woodside: other
on Aug 5, 2010 at 8:47 pm

This is all part of good governance.

The City Council should demand that the building department make the contractor remedy this situation immediately. This is within the scope of their responsibility.

What are they doing that's more important than public safety.


Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Aug 5, 2010 at 8:57 pm

What POGO describes is good government - it is not clear that Menlo Park is up to that standard.


Like this comment
Posted by Just Wondering
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Aug 6, 2010 at 7:18 am

"What POGO describes is good government - it is not clear that Menlo Park is up to that standard."

Compared to your hometown of Atherton, Peter, we are "the gold standard" here in MP.

And, by the way, what exactly are you doing to help YOUR hometown (as opposed to meddling in our affairs), Peter?


Like this comment
Posted by POGO
a resident of Woodside: other
on Aug 6, 2010 at 9:22 am

Just Wondering -

Your by line indicates you live in Menlo Park. Do you work in Menlo Park, too? Do you ever eat at a restaurant or go to a movie theater in another town?

We live in a COMMUNITY. What happens in EPA impacts Menlo Park. What happens at Stanford impacts Menlo Park. Palo Alto and San Carlos's negotiations with its police union, impacts Menlo Park. We don't live in a bubble.

I live in Woodside and people outside my neighborhood have never hesitated taking an interest in our affairs. The principal objector to the demolition of Steve Jobs' home does not live in Woodside. I once attended a meeting about Woodside's drinking water and every single person who spoke was from Palo Alto.

Instead of criticizing Mr. Carpenter for "meddling in our affairs" - who has a long history of public service (and I wonder if YOU have ever served in such a role?) - perhaps you should THANK HIM for taking an interest in your town which is, in fact, part of HIS COMMUNITY (just as Atherton is part of YOURS).

I think we would all be far better off if there were more citizens who took such an interest.


Like this comment
Posted by Bob
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Aug 6, 2010 at 1:28 pm

What the heck is the Community Services Director doing handling a building/planning/police/city manager problem for the city. Her job is directing the Community Services Department which "is responsible for providing recreational and cultural programs for children, adults, and seniors."
So two comments - this shows how totally inept our city is in its operations and that our local paper the Almanac has no clue about how to get to the city officials who should be dealing with the problem.


Like this comment
Posted by Just Wondering
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Aug 8, 2010 at 8:29 pm

POGO,

So by your line of reasoning, you're OK with France suggesting how we should do things in the U.S., because, after all, we don't live in a bubble?


Like this comment
Posted by POGO
a resident of Woodside: other
on Aug 8, 2010 at 8:56 pm

Actually, France - and every other nation - suggests "how we should do things in the US" all the time.

That doesn't make your analogy any less absurd.


Like this comment
Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Aug 10, 2010 at 6:46 pm

Hmmmmmmm. Tile installers scheduled for tuesday. No work today. I'll eat my hat if anyone shows up tomorrow. When will the city do something to correct the safety problem with this job site instead of accepting the developers BS excuses?


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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