Cuckoo’s Nest successor asks for a permit to throw creekside parties

BY EMILY MIBACH
Daily Post Staff Writer

The controversial techie social club the Cuckoo’s Nest may be defunct, but the incubator business that ran the club is now seeking a permit from Menlo Park for parties on its patio next to San Francisquito Creek, despite throwing such parties for years without a permit.

The Cuckoo’s Nest at 68 Willow Road was owned by BootUp Ventures, a startup incubator company. The signs at the Cuckoo’s Nest now say BootUp. Cuckoo’s Nest drove the neighbors crazy with the noise and barbecue smoke, and there were concerns about partygoers drinking too much and driving.

BootUp is asking the planning commission to approve a permit that would allow for weekly events of 20 to 30 people and monthly events of over 100 people. The events would be limited to 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Monday through Friday, but might occasionally be held on the weekend.

However a neighbor and longtime critic of BootUp says the application is “full of false pretenses.”

Palo Alto resident Andres Mediavilla has been trying to get Menlo Park to crack down on BootUp’s parties for years.

Menlo Park has been sending letters to BootUp since at least October telling them they cannot host events or throw parties at the business, according to an email sent from Assistant Community Director Deanna Chow to Mediavilla.

This application was sent to the city 16 days after the Post published an article about the parties still occurring at BootUp despite Cuckoo’s Nest closing.

“Over the past four years wer have had over 2,000 business meetings at our facility without negatively impacting our residential or commercial neighbors in Menlo Park. We had been previously using the patio from time to time until we were notified by the city that we had to apply for an active-use permit. We have since ceased active use of the patio,” the letter states.

However, Mediavilla said that an event had been held on Thursday.

“We have already experienced the damage this permit will cause to our community thanks to the incessant violations by BootUp in the last three years. BootUp has held parties until past midnight, used amplified sound at will, have already installed excessive outdoor lighting, etc, etc. Their permit application is full of false pretenses,” Mediavilla states in a letter he is planning to send to the city.

The BootUp/Cuckoo’s Nest property has been a thorn in neighbor’s sides since the club opened in November 2015.

Michael Harbour, who lives across the street from the club, said in July 2016 that everything that happens at the club “carries across the creek and it’s like it’s right in your house.”

The permit, which was submitted on April 5, will have to be reviewed at a future planning commission meeting that has not been scheduled yet.

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