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Stanford Shopping Center

Original post made by Michelle on Feb 11, 2008

What is happening to Stanford Shopping Center? Where is all the day to day stores they used to have like toy stores, book store, and coffe shops?
Instead more and more elite stores are opening (the next one is Michael Kors).
I am sure the moms in the area would love to have clothing stores for their kids, like Limited Too or Abercombie instead of driving to Valley Fair, or the teens would love to have stores for them too (like Hollister, Forever 21).
Are they really a lot of people who buy at the stores like Louis Vuitton, Burberry, Frette?

Comments (12)

Posted by Parent, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 11, 2008 at 9:20 am

All good questions. I miss Fresh Choice too.


Posted by Mom take me shopping, a resident of Gunn High School
on Feb 11, 2008 at 12:34 pm

When my teenager asks "Mom, can you take me and my friends shopping?" she means Valley Fair not Stanford. Does the Stanford management and the City of Palo Alto have any idea how much money teens spend?


Posted by Paly Parent, a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Feb 11, 2008 at 1:21 pm

My kids go to Hillsdale and Valley Fair for their shopping, and they go by Caltrain or bus. If they want to shop anywhere other than San Antonio, they go by themselves (but I can occasionally be talked into taking them to the Great Mall in Milpitas).

Teach your kids independence and see how important it really is for them to go shopping.


Posted by k, a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Feb 11, 2008 at 1:51 pm

Valley Fair is great and my teen D agrees. I don't care much for Stanford. Stanford is scenic with the nice landscaping but I don't really do much shopping there.


Posted by William F, a resident of Menlo Park
on Feb 11, 2008 at 3:51 pm

Stanford shopping center is a rental revenue generator for Stanford and a sales tax revenue generator for Palo Alto. It maximizes the take for both by targeting the high end stores and shoppers from the region. It is not and is not meant to be a community-serving retail resource.


Posted by Parent, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 11, 2008 at 4:36 pm

Just goes to prove why "real" Palo Altans have to go outside their own city to go shopping.


Posted by Mary, a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Feb 11, 2008 at 5:49 pm

At a lengthy presentation to the City Council by the new management owners of the Stanford Shopping Center, the 'presenter' made if very clear verbally that the shopping center will concentrate only on 'upscale' restaurants and businesses - and "we are not into housing" for employees.

So "Parent" maybe we should start a petition to get the Palo Alto shuttle to go to
Target, WalMart, Mervyn's and TJ's --- and the new Charleston Center which has Bed, Bath, and Beyond among other places. What is really a 'joke' is that Palo Alto is advocating more and more below market housing and 'affordable housing'. But where are these people going to shop? Where the 'ordinary rest-of-us', the retirees, the struggling singles, and on and on do their shopping. Just try to get a primary care physician at the PA Clinic - if you haven't been there before.

At T &C there is coming a very, very upscale kitchen store, Sur le Table, and an upscale boutique for PETS!! I saw today that Pendleton's is gone...not that I could afford it, but it was fun to just look. No way could I afford an ice cream cone at Cold Stone Creamery.


Posted by Parent, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 11, 2008 at 6:14 pm

So where will the employees of these new upscale stores live. If housing isn't provided for them, are they going to be paid enough to live in Palo Alto, or are they the ones who will move into the BMRs and ABAGs.?

Realistically, Palo Alto is becoming a place to live but not to dine, to go to the movies, or to shop for food, clothes and other necessities. We are being forced to do this in neighboring communities, not because we want to but because we have to. I even went to the Flea Market at Paly on Saturday and their prices were not even flea market prices. They must think they can overcharge for their junk just because it is Palo Alto.


Posted by Parent, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 11, 2008 at 6:40 pm

Even one of the stores I use the most, the Giants Dugout, has just halved in size and is not the store it used to be.

Just on my way out to buy some baseball cleats for my son, in Mountain View.


Posted by 14k/yr, a resident of Jordan Middle School
on Feb 12, 2008 at 12:16 pm

I really don't understand all this whining about the retail mix at the Stanford Mall. If the mall management wants a particular mix of high end-retail, that is the choice of management. I am guessing that the owners want to differentiate the mall from others in the area. How many Best Buys do we need in within 10 miles? How far will people go to interfer in the economically rational choices of private business?
Of course, high margin, low total sales stores don't help the local economy through sales taxes as much as low margin, high total sales do. Sacramento gets its tax revenue based on profits, so they could care less. Once again the massive foolishness of Prop 13's transfer of local control of government funds to Sacramento comes back to haunt us. It's only a matter of time before Palo Alto is forced to use eminent domain to bulldoze some old apartment buildings (low property tax generating, but high school expense generating) for some spiffy new sales tax generating dollar stores .
It is amazing that Palo Alto tend to be in the exact opposite situation of Rye New York in Westchester County. About 10 years ago, Rye (an upscale town-like Palo Alto pretends to be) sued the Village of Port Chester ( its neighbor) to prevent the Village from allowing a Home Depot to built in Port Chester. The good folk of Rye didn't want "those kind of people" being attracted to the area by the Home Depot. In contrast, a sizable portion of the Palo Alto population would love a Home Depot and in the foothills rather than pay an extra $500/year in property taxes. It seems I have digressed.

Web Link


Posted by Norm, a resident of Midtown
on Feb 12, 2008 at 4:57 pm

During the Stanford academic year, except school hoildays/breaks, the Stanford FREE shuttle service connects the University Ave CalTrain Station to San Antonio Center afternoons and evening 7 days a week. It runs every 45 minutes. You just have to tolerate it making an arc through the campus - which drags it out to a 35 minute trip one-way. But it does drop-off right at Wal-Mart, with Target jut across the street. The service is available to the general public, and gives access to the campus. If you ever have reason to go anywhere on campus, it's a good option - and you don't have to park.


Posted by Kate J, a resident of another community
on Feb 24, 2008 at 9:21 am

I used to live in Palo Alto, now in Redwood City, and always loved going to Stanford mall. But when Louis Vuitton went it I couldn't believe it. As more designer clothes (Seven for all Mankind, Juicy, Citizens of Humanity, True Religion, etc.) became more popular in high school, now I find that for some items in my wardrobe, that's all I have. Now I'm mostly talking about jeans but I scored an amazing Michael Kors bag at TJ Maxx and more in Santa Clara and am so excited for a store to come to Stanford, not so I can shop there, but to work :) (17 years old)


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