In 1947, a disastrous fire burnt down Iida city. In the years that followed local junior high school students began planting apple trees with a hope of restoring their beautiful hometown. As a result, cutting through the heart of Iida city today is “Ringo Namiki” (Apple Tree-Lined Avenue), a 300-meter stretch of public space with a pedestrian right-of-way, lined with 26 apple trees of 12 different kinds of apples, all of which are maintained and harvested yearly by local junior high school.
Because no one tries to steal the fruit, this avenue has become a symbol of “a good-hearted city”, and is an excellent example of how an area, struck by disaster, can be restored to become an even better environment. In this case, it was thanks to the strong will of the town’s young people. Today Ringo Namiki is known to both the local population and visitors alike as a popular site for the area’s many civic events.