WHAT will the Bathurst of the future look like? What do the next 10, 20, 50 or 100 years hold for our city's streetscape?
Will Bathurst continue to sprawl to the north and east, creeping its way towards Lithgow and western Sydney?
Or will the centre of town lose its low-rise regional city look and be transformed into a micro Manhattan with six, eight and 10-storey apartment blocks reaching into the sky?
They are challenging questions, and they are exciting questions. But they are also questions we need to start asking now to ensure our city can embrace the future rather than be choked by it.
Because what we do know is that Bathurst will continue to change - and it must.
Over the past decade this city has been one of the fastest growing centres in regional NSW, with newcomers drawn to a mix of job and education opportunities, still affordable housing and a diverse economy that is largely immune to downturns.
Bathurst's population is forecast to grow by another 10,000 people or so between now and 2036, so we need to start thinking now about where those families will live.
And it won't be just local regional factors that contribute to our population growth: the ongoing debate about Australia's migration policies will inevitably focus more on the potential to relocate new arrivals to regional centres to avoid over-crowding in the capitals.
And Bathurst's proximity to Sydney makes it an obvious choice to ease the squeeze.
To that end, Regional Australia Institute has begun lobbying for greater migration out of the major cities but any rapid population growth would come with the same challenges in the regions as in the major cities.
The local housing mix and housing options is one of the biggest. Councillor Warren Aubin put the question on the agenda at Wednesday night's Bathurst Regional Council meeting and it has got plenty of people thinking over he past day or so.
But the answer is probably obvious: If Bathurst is to house another 10,000 people, then a continued sprawl is neither viable nor valuable.
There will need to be more high and medium density close to the centre of town, but - as a community - we must demand quality as well as quantity.
It all adds up to an exciting future for Bathurst. And if we get the planning right on high-rise housing in the CBD, then it really is a case of the sky's the limit.