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La Comida struggling to find new location

Original post made on Apr 18, 2017

La Comida Senior Nutrition, a longtime senior lunch program relied on by more than 160 seniors, is asking the community to help find a new location after a fruitless search, the organization said in a public announcement.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, April 18, 2017, 9:37 AM

Comments (14)

Posted by Mark Dinan
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Apr 18, 2017 at 10:23 am

Mark Dinan is a registered user.

They should look at East Palo Alto. There are a bunch of under utilized churches here, and EPA is no farther from downtown Palo Alto than South Palo Alto.

Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 18, 2017 at 10:28 am

Didn't Cubberley HS have a cafeteria/lunchroom?

Posted by Friend of La Comida
a resident of Downtown North
on Apr 18, 2017 at 10:52 am

Sad to see this situation. Hope the City can help. Vice Mayor Kniss seems to miss the point that even if Avenidas had been able to provide enough space for La Comida after the renovation, that would not​ help with a location for the next two years during the renovation.

Posted by senot blogger
a resident of Palo Verde
on Apr 18, 2017 at 11:16 am

Cubberly is the perfect answer

Posted by Annies Biped
a resident of Midtown
on Apr 18, 2017 at 11:41 am

While East Palo Alto may seem like a good idea for La Comida, it's in San Mateo County. La Comida is a Santa Clara County funded senior nutrition site. Cubberley also seemed like a good fit but the kitchen there is no longer functioning. The former multipurpose room has been carpeted and is inappropriate for food service. La Comida currently serves lunch for about forty seniors at the Senior Friendship Day (Wednesdays) at Cubberley in a classroom setting. But perhaps the school district could be persuaded to reconsider.

Posted by Art
a resident of Barron Park
on Apr 18, 2017 at 2:20 pm

Maybe something can be worked out with Comida using the City Hall employee cafeteria by adjusting the hours of service

Posted by La Comida senior
a resident of Downtown North
on Apr 18, 2017 at 3:14 pm

Do you know the history...

Did the City of Palo Alto provide funds to build the dining room and the kitchen for La Comida?

Does this historical building belong to the City of Palo Alto?

How much rent does Avenidas pay to the City of Palo Alto for the use of this historical building?

If the City did provide funds to Avenidas in any way, the City of Palo Alto should have a say so...unless they don't want to upset the Establishment, the likes of Betsy Bechtel and Liz Kniss.

Lis Kniss, of course, used La Comida lunches during her campaign to garner votes and brought her boys who ran with her to lunch too. But, when it comes to needing help to continue our services, Liz Kniss provides only lip service.

Posted by Anthony Gallo
a resident of Mountain View
on Apr 19, 2017 at 8:45 am

It has long been recognized that Avenidas has wanted La Comida to move out of its center. This is way before thoughts about renovating the overall facility began. Now this is finally their chance.
The City owns the facility and the City should assist in finding temporary space while the facility is being renovated, however, then La Comida should return and provide two lunch shifts or a lunch meal and perhaps an evening meal to accommodate the current number of participants.
The City obviously had to approve the changes to the Avenidas facility and knew then that La Comida would be at risk. At that time, language should have been written to guarantee La Comida a permanent space.
It is funny now that millions of dollars have been raised for the Avenidas
renovation campaign that this news suddenly comes to light. Were I a donor I would certainly question why this information was not made public sooner.

Posted by Van Kelly
a resident of Community Center
on Apr 19, 2017 at 10:55 am

Avenidas has outgrown this location and should move. They should not be allowed to destroy this beautiful historical building by adding to it with a modern metal and glass building.

No, Mayor Scharff, it will not look good as you seem to believe it is good to have different forms of architecture next to each other. No!

I am sure there are other worthy and not such arrogant non-profit organizations that would love to use this space and not insist on changing and chasing out a worthy low income nutritious senior lunch program.

Posted by Anthony Gallo
a resident of Mountain View
on Apr 19, 2017 at 2:58 pm

I wonder if anyone involved in the development of this rather grandiose and expensive project ever thought to ask the actual users of the facility what they thought about the proposal or (God forbid) involve any of them in the planning process. It is the height of arrogance when decisions are being made for seniors instead of by seniors.

In my opinion if the old Fire House is of historical importance it should remain at least slightly identifiable as the original. This entire fiasco aided and abetted by the City Council should be done over, the funding raised returned and a community advisory planning committee established. Avenidas may be the agency that needs to move, not La Comida.

Posted by Not needed, not wanted
a resident of Downtown North
on Apr 20, 2017 at 12:14 pm

Anthony asked: I wonder if anyone involved in the development of this rather grandiose and expensive project ever thought to ask the actual users of the facility what they thought about the proposal

No they did not. The development advocates on staff and board make these decisions. Their developer friends can earn big bucks. The present building needs some updating, not major destruction.
Despite what they claim, it isn't crowded - only the lunch is crowded. The basement is unused most of the time, classrooms are often empty, etc.

Posted by La Comida patron
a resident of Community Center
on Jun 3, 2017 at 12:50 pm

I have been going to this wonderful La Comida site for 29 yrs & have seen the growth & experience the energy & good food. It is one of the top 3 Senior Nutrition Sites for the County ( 1 out of 39)and the oldest. What a shame it has to go away this way. In the eighties and late seventies, even Meals on Wheels hot meals were packed out from this kitchen, going to Stanford and PA area. May be the Stanford Foundation can help out in some way? The kitchen staff is very creative in preparing meals (e.g. serving specialty grains that healthy folks like). This is the only site that have piano playing and fresh flowers & at times Stanford students serving meals for their community experience. This is the only Site that prepares meals for 3 PA locations now & gets one meager pay (bet they can get jobs in the hi-tech kitchens). One senior (in the past) who valued so much of the program had donated a large sum of $ to Palo Alto Senior Center and partially to La Comida for the benefits she obtained, where will the legacy go from here? More baby boomers will be needing this program, or more seniors will go malnourished, resulting in early institutionalization and govt costs. Please rethink & take action soon!!!

Posted by Lynne
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 22, 2017 at 8:55 am

Put them in that new noisy, air pollution causing, parking garage that they city is building downtown. At least make good use of that proposed structure that belongs in 1987.

Posted by Mr Ed
a resident of Crescent Park
on Aug 23, 2017 at 3:41 pm

As a longtime resident of this community for over 50 years I ma shocked and disappointed about this situation. La Comida should be helped in finding a temporary location that works and should be allowed to stay in downtown PA when the new nightmare structure is completed. This institution has been in the community since 76/77 and provides good nutrition, socializing, music during lunches, positive environment to great seniors who have gave so much to the city they live in over the yeas. Sound like some pockets are going to be lined very well when the smoke clears from this mess. Just horrible that La Comida is thrown to the curb and pushed out, lets face it....they are not part of the agenda folks. This City is an absolute mess. When I go down to the post office and see them mopping up urine and worse every morning cause of the homeless problem, and I go to the City and they turn a blind yet...(even the cops)....well you know there is a huge problem in city hall. Anyway, it's sad indeed.....maybe this note will touch someone who has enough sense to do the right thing...but don't hold your breath.

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