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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.