A high-density Tamworth could be just around the corner, with the city's development team already receiving inquiries from developers interested in building the city's first high-rise apartment.
Manager of development Sam Lobsey said if the interest is genuine, Tamworth Regional Council could receive their first DA by the end of the year.
"I don't think people would be shocked, people would see it as the growth of the city," he said.
"I think people get excited about it. There is a market for those people that want to downscale. If the CBD is activated and there's a night-time economy, then you're going to see more people want to move into places like our CBD. It is happening regionally in other areas."
He said having a larger population in the city would generate more street-life and more restaurant businesses, while also permitting apartment residents a more convenient life.
"There are benefits to just being able to go downstairs and grab a coffee," he said.
"That's the type of life that you would only assume is in Newtown or wherever, but there's no reason why Tamworth couldn't hold that same sort of vibe if it's done well. That's kind of what we're thinking when it comes to CBD living."
State housing minister Melinda Pavey raised the option of going tall to slow the spike in rents and house prices in NSW during a visit to Tamworth last week.
"I can see potential like that for cities like Tamworth, particularly for our elder population to be able to live within their city and get the lift down and get a coffee," she said.
"I think that sort of approach needs to be looked at."
Tamworth council's Blueprint 100 city plan would permit the growth of the city to a population of 100,000 people by building both "up and out", Mr Lobsey said.
The controversial 25-year document was signed off by Tamworth councillors last year.
Mr Lobsey said the most likely candidates for immediate densification were high-rise on Kable Avenue, or in West or North Tamworth where the plan recommends shrinking the minimum lot size to allow subdivision.
New types of housing may even attract new types of residents, growing the city's population.
"It's about attracting all walks of life," he said.
"If you just pigeonhole the community into one standard size block, a lot of those people might not want to live in Tamworth, because they have other opportunities to live in a place that they prefer.
"You want to have that attractability. The more diverse options you have, the more likely you'll have different people, different communities coming here. Diversity is the real key for trying to build up the community."
Mr Lobsey said there's no timeframe for when the city could get its first apartment building, but there's interest out there.
"We are getting enquiries at the moment. So if we're getting enquiries now, if people are fair dinkum about those enquiries then I'd hope to see DA's for high-rise in the next year or two," he said.
"Which would then be a real signal that people have done their research and they think it's a good option. If we're getting these enquiries and we don't see DA's then we need to look at our strategies again. I think it is coming, it's just a matter of when."
Coffs Harbour - population just 71,882 - has recently accepted a development application for a seven-storey high-rise in the centre of town, minister Pavey said.
Wagga Wagga City council last year approved a $21 million, 17-storey apartment; the city's tallest residential building.