Help town to thrive again

Shop local: Councillor Matt Gould wants people to spend time in Warragamba and help the once bustling town to thrive once more. Picture: Ashleigh Tullis

Shop local: Councillor Matt Gould wants people to spend time in Warragamba and help the once bustling town to thrive once more. Picture: Ashleigh Tullis

Warragamba needs you.

The once thriving town has fallen off tourists’ radars in the past 10 years and Wollondilly councillor Matt Gould wants that to change.

Cr Gould held a meeting with Warragamba store owners to brainstorm ideas for revitalising the town centre.

He said the meeting was a positive step.

“It was a very productive meeting,” he said.

“Warragamba is struggling at the moment and council is doing all that we can to get the town up and running.

“There is only so much we can do so we want to work collaboratively with business owners and the community as well.”

During the meeting Cr Gould said business owners discussed the possibility of starting a chamber of commerce among other community initiatives.

“We are at an unfortunate stage where a number of shops are now vacant in Warragamba but we want to break that cycle and encourage more investment in the area,” he said.

“Warragamba has the potential to be like Berrima or Leura with small galleries and cafes.

“We also want to maintain the town’s heritage values as well.”

Cr Gould said the town had suffered some unfortunate setbacks over the past 10 to 15 years including the recent closure of the town’s viewing platform due to asbestos.

“The closure of the dam years ago and the Christmas fires were a bit of a kick in throat,” he said.

“We have had the butcher, the vet, the fruit shop and newsagency close in the past 12 months.

“It’s a complex issue.”

Wollondilly Council has committed to a number of projects in Warragamba including the all-abilities playground and enhancing viewing platforms at Warragamba Dam.

The council will also develop a strategy and infrastructure so the village can obtain a “RV Friendly Town” certification from the Campervan and Mobile Home Club of Australia.

“We are also looking at putting a walking trail between the visitors’ centre and the lookout which will take people right through town,” Cr Gould said.

“So when the viewing platform reopens we can get people to come through town.”

Cr Gould said Warragamba had a lot to offer.

“There is plenty to look at, the dam is amazing, the picnic area is spectacular, people should come into town and have a look at what’s on offer,” he said.

“It’s a chicken and the egg situation, we just need to get things going again.”

Warragamba has the potential to be like Berrima or Leura with small galleries and cafes. - Councillor Matt Gould

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