Citizen politics, unlike party politics, does not seek to change government, but to improve it by watchfulness, oversight and advice
- Ursula Franklin

HSRO Herald – Nov 2020 Newsletter

The latest edition of the HSRO Herald has just been published. Residents in Huron Sussex should check their mailbox for the November 2020 print edition, or get it here in PDF.

Update: New Laneway Houses on Huron

Huron Sussex Laneway Houses Facts Sheet & Links to Virtual 3D Tours

There are three houses:
– 3 storey laneway house – approximately 900 sf
– 2 storey laneway house – approximately 800 sf
– and an infill house on Huron – approximately 1600 sf

The houses are designed to be net-zero energy and net-zero carbon, using ‘Passive House’ principles utilizing:
– super-insulated prefabricated wall panels,
– triple-glazed windows,
– and foundation insulation systems,
– with on-site renewable energy generation.

During construction, each house was tested to confirm they meet/exceeded the Passive House standard for air tightness, which is three times better than a typical new house.

The use of wood and engineered wood products forms part of a sustainability approach based upon the utilization of renewable, carbon sequestering building materials.  The houses are clad in thermally treated ash – a product that has become readily available due to the environmental impacts caused by the Emerald Ash Borer, an insect that feeds on ash trees. The ash siding has been treated to remove naturally occurring sugars from the wood, to improve resistance to rot and insect damage. The houses are constructed upon a super insulated foam foundation system that utilizes engineered fill and avoids the need for deep concrete foundations. Photovoltaic panels are installed on the roof and feed into the grid.

An earth tube system was installed within the remaining foundations of a demolished house. This system uses the constant temperature of the ground to modify the temperature of outdoor air that is needed by the building’s ventilation system.  Ventilation air is drawing through a network of tubes buried in the ground, which increases the temperature of ventilation air in the winter, and decreases temperature in the summer, resulting in a direct reduction in the energy demands of the building’s heating and cooling system. The laneway houses use the air as conditioned by the earth; air being provided to the infill house is additionally conditioned by a unit within that house.

The use of on-site renewable energy in the form of rooftop photovoltaic panels, ground source (earth tube) heating, and the avoidance of the on-site fossil fuel use are all critical to project’s sustainability approach and general ‘greening’ of the electrical grid.  This extends to the use of water conserving plumbing fixtures and in-line heating systems and heat recovery systems on shower drains.

Please see below for the 3D tours of each home: 

366 Huron St –

368b Huron St

368a Huron St

Interview Participants Needed for Doctoral Study on Eastern Grey Squirrels

If you live in Huron-Sussex and have had a recent conflict experience with eastern grey squirrels, you may be eligible to participate in a doctoral study on eastern grey squirrels! Please note that eastern grey squirrels have a few colour variations: black, grey, brindle or even white (although rare in Huron-Sussex).

toronto white squirrel

Tracy Timmins is a doctoral candidate at the Faculty of Environmental Studies, York University, investigating Torontonians’ encounters with eastern grey squirrels with the aims of supporting coexistence and identifying strategies to prevent, mitigate, or resolve conflicts effectively.

Tracy would like to interview people who have had conflict with squirrels about their experiences. Interviews will be approximately 45 minutes to one hour. Participants will receive a $10 Starbucks gift card.

If you are interested in participating in this study, or would like more information, please contact Tracy at

Innis College Addition & Renovation – Meeting, Nov 21

You are invited to a presentation and discussion of the proposed
Innis College Addition & Renovation project, located on the
north side of Sussex Ave, at the corner of St. George Street.

The University is planning an addition and renovation of Innis College at
the St. George campus. The design proposes a sensitive infill strategy
for the expansion situated behind the existing west wing of the College,
and selective exterior and interior renovations that will preserve the
qualities of the original College building, including the Victorian house
component. The project will provide an array of new study areas; a
student learning centre, including the college library, student services, and
writing centre; an expanded multipurpose cafe open to the public; new
classroom spaces and academic offices; and will also greatly improve
the accessibility of the building. All are welcome to the presentation
and discussion to learn more about the project and provide feedback.

Presentation by Montgomery Sisam Architects and
Brook Mcllroy

Thursday, November 21, 6:00pm – 7:30pm
Innis College Cafeteria Ground Floor
2 Sussex Ave (at St. George Street)

Hallowe’en in Huron-Sussex

Residents who revel in the Hallowe’en spirit are invited to join the neighbourhood in our 18th annual trick-or-treat festivities:

4:30 pm onwards: Pumpkin carving (bring your own pumpkin)
5:00 pm: juice & snacks

At the new playground – corner of Huron & Washington
(Note: Rain location – on the porch of 7 Washington Ave)

Carve & Light the best pumpkin ever and put it on your porch to welcome funny / scary faces at your door.
Parents: look for these Jack-o’-Lanterns as your little goblins go trick-or-treating in Huron-Sussex