A semi-detached house in Toronto is dangerously unstable after a neighboring house was demolished.
The house at 358 Huron Street was once attached to 356 Huron Street, and although none of the houses is listed as an heirloom, they were built in the late 1800s and occupied by an associate professor, AB McCallum (356 Huron) and JM Reade, an accountant (358 Huron), according to the Toronto Architectural Conservancy in Ontario.
The two homes were also located in the Huron-Sussex area of special identity in the official plan of the city of Toronto, located in the northwest quadrant of the University of Toronto St. George Campus.
The property was originally a wooden structure and was converted into a brick structure (at primary height) after construction, according to the ACO.
The home at 356 Huron Street is privately owned, but 358 Huron Street is owned by the University of Toronto and has been vacant for several years.
The University of Toronto building, now left unsafe, actually had an application to renovate the home, according to City of Toronto documents. But a Toronto city post on the building states it is now unsafe and “the existing demolition work on 356 Huron St. has significantly reduced the stability of 358 Huron St.”
In a statement, the University of Toronto said it owns many homes in the Huron-Sussex area, which are used primarily for family housing for students and faculty members.
The home at 358 Huron Street was occupied by a tenant for a long period of time, the statement said.
“In recent years, the property has required and undergone repairs. The university inhabited the tenant elsewhere.”
“Demolition activity next door – which the university does not own – caused structural stability problems at 358 Huron. The university had no choice but to apply for permission to demolish the house, which we recently received from Toronto City. That work has now begun.”
Like the crooked house on Shaw Street, this is the risk of owning a semi-detached house — you never know what your neighbor might do, and the structural integrity of your system depends on it.