Prime Minister John Key has visited projects seeking to create a sense of community in the earthquake-devastated centre of Christchurch.
His visit to the city he grew up in yesterday helped to highlight the Otakaro Orchard and the nearby Margaret Mahy family playground.
The orchard is a community garden on government-owned land on Cambridge Terrace that has just got the green light.
The Food Resilience Network is leasing the land for $1 a year for five years, Associate Minister for Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Nicky Wagner says.
Volunteers will grow fruits and vegetables on the land. Some of the food grown will also be used by a social enterprise cafe to be built on the site.
"The benefits won't just be the fruit and vegetables grown, the garden will also be a social hub for people to gather and build a sense of community in the central city," Ms Wagner says.
Mr Key visited the new playground inspired by the stories of New Zealand author Margaret Mahy, which is spread across 3500sq m of what was once an earthquake-damaged block in central Christchurch. It was opened in December.
The playground "designed by kids for kids" features four zones, the forest, the wetlands, the plains and the peninsula.