Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Please report graffiti to have it removed

There has been an increase in graffiti in the neighborhood recently, which is not good. For those who have lived here more than a few years, you will remember the kinds of problems that we all worked hard to leave in the past, and we don't want to return to those days.

So, if you see graffiti, please report it to the San Jose Anti-Graffiti Program via their phone system. It's a simple step to take a phone with you on your walks and make a quick call to report the location, surface color, and other info to the anti-graffiti team. They will come out to help remove the markings -- all you have to do is make a call, and it can even be anonymous.

Anti-Graffiti Team 408-277-2758
If you see graffiti in progress: 408-277-8911 (direct 911 call to San Jose Police)

A short, but long history

For those who have never seen it, there is a "Short History of North Willow Glen" available online, going back to the 1870s. This information was compiled by Dan Erceg and others and is part of the old NWGNA web site that was maintained by Ken Eklund. It is an interesting read, especially as the historical survey of our neighborhood gets underway. Check it out!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Agenda for Tuesday's general meeting

We look forward to seeing you at Tuesday's neighborhood meeting, 6:30-8:00 p.m. at the Word of Faith Church, 873 Delmas Avenue (corner of Fuller and Delmas Ave). Here's the agenda:

* Upcoming holiday events
     - Decorating contest
           Organization, promotion, hosting
     - Yard trees
* Fruit & veggie share feedback, next steps
* Historic survey
     - Guest speaker: Franklin Maggi, Architectural Historian
* Neighborhood news

Willow/Lincoln project begins, free valet parking

View from Lincoln Avenue

Construction began this morning on the 41,000-square-foot mixed-use project at Willow and Lincoln. The project, from Paja Investments LLC and designed by Kahn Design Associates, will include about 18,000 square feet of ground-floor retail and about 23,000 feet of second- and third-floor office space.

One important note: the demolition that should begin this week for this project affects the parking lot behind Jamba Juice, Noah's, Peet's, etc. The project is providing free valet parking to all customers. So, if you are a regular customer who drives to these businesses, you will be able to park using the free valet. Some of the businesses are concerned about a big drop in business due to the construction, so let's spread the word that you can still enjoy these businesses just like always.

You can read more about the project on the architect's web site. Info on project tenants are also available.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Flier Delivery: More Help Needed

We have a few more streets that need fliers delivered for next Tuesday's NWGNA general meeting. It's a great way to see the neighborhood and the weather will be great!

Bird - 64 homes
Fuller - 86 homes
Hull - 71 homes
Delmas - 66 homes

Call Bill at 408-893-6684 if you can help.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Trick or Treat on Lincoln Avenue: Help Needed

The Willow Glen Business Association is very excited to coordinate the 2010 Trick or Treat event on Lincoln Avenue. Our goal for this year is to focus on safety and organization! To achieve this goal, we need volunteers to fill the position of Cross guards or Trail Monitors. You can volunteer for either one or both time slots. Let’s make this a safe event for San Jose’s children!

What: Trick or Treat Event on Lincoln Avenue
Where: Lincoln Avenue, Downtown Willow Glen
When: Friday, October 29th
Time Slots: 10am-12pm AND/OR 2pm-4pm
Positions Available:
Cross guards: 8 for morning shift; 4 for afternoon shift – adults only

* Stationed at key crosswalks
* Safely crosses trick-or-treaters
* Stops pedestrians to allow cars to pass in order to minimize back-ups

***Equipment: safety vests, whistle, stop sign or flag

Trail Monitors: 10-15 per shift

* Directs trick-or-treaters to follow trail (clock-wise)
* Informs trick-or-treaters and businesses that shift has ended
* Backs up cross guards as needed

Contact: If you are interested in volunteering for this event, please contact Cynthia Gutierrez at 298-2100 or

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Help needed: flier delivery this weekend

We will have fliers later today for next week's NWGNA general meeting and are looking for flier delivery help around the neighborhood for this weekend.

Please call Bill at 408-893-6684 or email to if you can help.


The Terry family on Spencer had two kittens show up just inside of their fence on Wednesday. It's possible that they've been abandoned, but it's also possible that someone was taking care of them and the momma kitty decided to find a new home. They are walking, but, not very steadily.

If you know of a good shelter that would take them, they would love to get the info. Or, if you want to adopt them, feel free!

Please contact

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

San Jose's redevelopment agency lays off 14 employees

See the article in today's Mercury News about the latest round of layoffs at the San Jose Redevelopment Agency.

"Among notable employees let go was Deputy Executive Director Abi Maghamfar, who helped oversee the popular Strong Neighborhoods Initiative and some downtown projects. Sal Alvarez, the interim Strong Neighborhoods manager who focused on several Eastside communities, also was on the list.
"Money for the initiative, which invests in neighborhood improvement projects, has been slashed from the new budget as Mavrogenes tries to focus his dwindling resources on big-ticket economic development projects such as the proposed downtown baseball stadium and a face-lift for the city's convention center."

Fresh & Easy planning one more store in the area

Fresh & Easy now says that they are adding another store in the area, this one in Sunnyvale. Their local stores are slated to open in early 2011, including the one at Bird and Minnesota.

If you would like to follow news about Fresh & Easy, check out

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Have you seen this dog?

This dog has been missing from North Willow Glen for the last week. Bingo is a volunteer dog in senior living communities and his family misses him. Please help find him! He is a Shih Tzu, neutered, white with black spots.

Click on the photo to see it larger.

CALL IF FOUND - 1-888-833-4208

Monday, September 20, 2010

Supervisor Yeager's September 2010 Newsletter

County Supervisor Ken Yeager's latest newsletter is available online. Topics include:
  • Three Creeks Funding Approved
  • Lack of State Budget Puts Strain on County Finances
  • Local Transportation Agencies Get You Moving Quicker
  • Calendar of Events

List of PG&E's 100 high-risk natural gas pipeline segments

PG&E has released a list of the top 100 high-risk gas pipeline segments and there appears to be no segments near greater Willow Glen.

Mercury News editorial: It's payback time for High-Speed Rail in San Jose

An editorial in today's Mercury News contained a nice shout-out to the hard-working group who were successful in getting high-speed rail to choose a route that does not cut through Gardner and North Willow Glen:
San Jose has scored an important victory with high-speed rail already: moving the preferred route out of the Gardner neighborhood to an alignment over freeways that Larsen's team suggested. But the real credit for that victory goes to community leaders in Greater Gardner, who rooted out facts, raised excellent questions and presented it all so reasonably but persistently that they could not be ignored.
Maybe the city should call on them to go to bat for the design agreement.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

5th Annual San Jose Rock N’ Roll Half Marathon

The 5th Annual Rock N’ Roll Half Marathon will be held on Sunday, October 3, 2010 at 8am. The race begins and ends in downtown San Jose, running through Japantown, University Ave, Rose Garden, and Cory neighborhoods.

More information can be found through San Jose ’s Rock N’ Roll Half Marathon web site at

Course Map:

Monday, September 13, 2010

Last chance to ask for an underground station for High-Speed Rail

Thanks to Jean Dresden for this:

Last chance to ask for an underground station for High-Speed Rail. San Jose City Council will make a decision about what to ask of High Speed Rail Authority. Tomorrow, Sept. 14 at about 2:30 pm, City Hall.

Check out the op-ed in Mercury News. It explains why it is important to study an underground option in the EIR.

Councilmember Liccardo has authored a memo, along with Mayor Reed and Councilmembers Kalra and Nguyen, for tomorrow’s council agenda item regarding high speed rail. The full agenda item 6.1 is available.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Fruit/Veggie Share this Sunday

The fruit/veggie share will be held again this Sunday from 11:30 to 1:30 in front of 1012 Spencer, between Willow and Atlanta. We encourage anyone who would like garden goodies to come by, even if you don't have anything to bring. There's always more than enough to go around, and it's free!

This week's requests: figs, apples, tomatoes, lemons, any seeds, and a tea plant.

Save Our Trails: Request to ensure completion of Three Creeks Trail

From Taisia McMahon, President of Save Our Trails:

This is a critical request and a sure way to ensure the completion of the Three Creeks Trail. Please attend this Tuesday September 14 Board of Supervisor’s meeting at 9:30am in their chambers located at 70 West Hedding Street, San Jose.

The Board will vote on whether to approve $2 million for the immediate purchase of the Western Alignment of the Three Creeks Trail and another $1 million for the future purchase of the East Side portion of the trail.

Once we have acquired the Western half, it will be time to focus on the Eastern half for a long-awaited East/West trail corridor.

PLEASE ATTEND THIS MEETING -- our cause has grown and gained momentum because of the efforts of our fantastic membership and supporters. We would not be here if it weren’t for your continued support and commitment.

The community outpouring has been the critical piece to the success of our efforts.

Meeting agenda:

Read about your neighbor in SJ Mercury News

In yesterday's Merc: North Willow Glen resident gives connections between strangers a visual at 01 festival

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Urgent request for blood donations

Blood Centers of the Pacific is issuing an emergency appeal for blood donations, particularly of Type O negative, to replenish the supply currently being depleted by those injured in today's explosion and fire in San Bruno.

Blood Centers of the Pacific

Stanford Blood Center

Red Cross Blood Donation
San Jose Donor Center
2731 N First Street
San Jose, CA 95134

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Know your neighbors, support each other

Recently in North Willow Glen, a person out walking their dog noticed some young men walking down a neighbor's driveway. Since she knew that person was away, she immediately alerted the police and an arrest was made on the spot. Hurray for knowing your neighbors and sticking together to create a better neighborhood!

Another reminder that we need to keep our eyes open, know our neighbors and their habits, and call when we see something or someone out of the ordinary. Remember, you can always call 311 if you see an unusual situation and the dispatcher will determine if it's an emergency.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Alcohol permit application: Walgreens, Bird & Willow

The Walgreen's at Bird and Willow has applied for a conditional use permit to allow the store to sell alcohol. We are gathering more information on this potential change, but if you are interested in this issue, please let us know by emailing

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Fruits and veggies, oh my!

The fruit and veggie events have been so successful that we sometimes have leftover garden goodies. We want to encourage everyone to come share in the fruits, veggies, etc. so we are renaming this regular event -- it is now The Fruit and Veggie Share. You don't have to offer anything to receive local garden bounty. Just come by, visit, and see what you can use so that it does not end up going to waste.

This week, we have had requests for lemons, squash, and cherry tomatoes, so if you have those items to share, bring them by 1012 Spencer Avenue between 11:30 and 1:30 on Sunday.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Air District pays cash for old cars

Another note from Supervisor Yeager:

In addition to serving as a member of the California Air Resources Board, I represent the County locally on the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD). BAAQMD runs a variety of programs aimed at reducing air pollution and greenhouse gases—Spare the Air probably being one of its most well known. Another of its more popular services is the Vehicle Buy Back Program.

The Vehicle Buy Back Program will pay $1,000 for an operating and registered 1989 and older vehicle. Vehicle dismantlers contracted by the BAAQMD will then scrap the vehicles. This program reduces air pollution by voluntarily removing older, dirtier vehicles off the road.

To qualify, vehicles must be in running condition and registered in the Bay Area for the past 24 months. Vehicles within 60 days of a smog check must also be able to pass it. For more information, go to The program ends on December 31, 2010.

CalTrain needs your input on proposed changes

Note from Santa Clara County Supervisor Ken Yeager about CalTrain:

On September 2 at 10 a.m., Caltrain will hold a public hearing to review options and receive comments on possible fare and service changes. Caltrain is the only Bay Area transit agency without a dedicated source of funding, and it is facing a $2.3 million deficit in this fiscal year. The other members of the Board of Directors and I would like to hear your opinion on proposals for closing the gap.

Caltrain’s budget problems can be attributed to several factors. The commuter railroad has lost $10 million in state funds each year for the last three years. Last year the state eliminated State Transportation Assistance funds, forcing Caltrain’s three partners – the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, the San Mateo County Transit District and the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority – to reduce their support.

Based on public input up to this point, two proposals will no longer be considered for this year. Those include cutting weekend service and ending service South of Tamien Station to Gilroy. However, the following proposals are still under consideration:
  • Reduce weekday early morning, midday and/or late evening service
  • Discontinue staffed ticket offices
  • Increase fares
  • Modify parking fees and regulations
Last year, eight midday trains were eliminated and parking fees were increased to close a $2.6 million budget gap. In addition to a hiring freeze on all but the most essential positions, salaries have been frozen and staff will take a total of 17 mandatory furlough days. Unfortunately, the financial outlook for Caltrain is not likely to improve much next year, and more cuts will likely be considered then.

The public hearing will be held at the Caltrain Administrative Office at 1250 San Carlos Ave. in San Carlos. Prior to the meeting, you can email comments to You can also send your thoughts to me at Fuller details of the proposed changes can be found at