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Christchurch Urban Food Production

Christchurch Urban Food Production

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Once tagged as ‘the garden city’, Christchurch might now be classed as ‘the city in a garden’. Its people are bringing food production into the CBD, from a hotel with beehives on the roof to an inner-city café with its own vegetable patch.

bees_hotel_montreal-3.jpg?center=0.63876651982378851,0.51319648093841641&mode=crop&width=800&heightratio=0.6030534351145038&rnd=131692343270000000Beekeeping on Hotel Montreal - Image: Stephen Goodenough

Kākano Café and Cookery School

Kākano Café and Cookery School opened a couple of years ago and recently moved to its new home in Manchester Street, where its wooden garden beds spell out ‘Kakano’, which means ‘seed’. The business belongs to Jade Temepara, a busy mother of five, who says the café champions a “revamped version” of indigenous Maori cuisine.

kakano.jpg?center=0.47983870967741937,0.49428571428571427&mode=crop&width=800&heightratio=0.6030534351145038&rnd=131693016300000000Kākano Café and Cookery School at its previous location in Peterborough Street

Hotel Montreal

An increasing number of CBD businesses are investing in rooftop hives, including Hotel Montreal and Christchurch’s popular Ballantynes department store. Hotel Montreal has a handful of hives on its rooftop and the chef uses the honey produced in specialty dishes in the Polo Bar & Restaurant kitchen.

bees_hotel_montreal-2.jpg?center=0.42060085836909872,0.47142857142857142&mode=crop&width=800&heightratio=0.6030534351145038&rnd=131692350240000000A beehive on the rooftop at Hotel Montreal - Image: Stephen Goodenough

Ōtākaro Orchard

Ōtākaro Orchard is under construction but once finished it will be New Zealand's first urban food hub, where people will be able to grow and share food, enjoy cafe cuisine and learn about the city’s sustainable local food system. It will feature Christchurch’s first ever commercial earth building, which will house a food information centre and café. Those behind Ōtākaro Orchard say the project is about “reimagining our urban green spaces as edible ones”.

Otakaro Orchard Christchurch City Urban GardenA planting day at Ōtākaro Orchard

C1 Espresso

C1 Espresso operates out of an old post office building in central Christchurch – one of the few heritage buildings left standing after the city's 2010/2011 quakes. The café grows ingredients for its kitchen in its urban organic gardens and has a vineyard in the forecourt. C1 Espresso recycles all organic waste, glass, plastic and cardboard and is heated using waste energy from the coffee roastery and kitchen. The café’s tables and joinery are made from recycled demolition timber.

c1.jpg?anchor=center&mode=crop&width=800&heightratio=0.6030534351145038&rnd=131693015960000000A pukeko in the garden at C1 Espresso - Image: Supplied

Sustainable urban agriculture

Sustainable urban agriculture is on the cards for an area of Christchurch known as the Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor. It may form part of a mix of activities in an 11-kilometre stretch of land described as the “residential red zone” following the Canterbury earthquakes, owing to the houses that once occupied urban sections there. The land is currently under the microscope as local agency Regenerate Christchurch leads a decision-making process about its future. Other land uses may include wetlands, community spaces and adaptive housing.

oarc-green-spine.jpg?anchor=center&mode=crop&width=800&heightratio=0.6030534351145038&rnd=131679995390000000Ōtākaro Avon River Corridor concept drawing - Image: Regenerate Christchurch


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