Since 2007, the Rudd and Gillard Labor governments have demonstrated a heightened interest in both local government and regional governance arrangements. However, previous attempts at reinforcing the legitimacy of Australian local government and engendering regionalism across the Australian polity have faltered, (see, for example, Megarrity, 2012). Further, combined with forced or encouraged amalgamation programs across all state and territory jurisdictions, local government still resembles the 'poor cousin' in Australia's federal structure (Aulich, 2005). Yet local governments in the majority of Australian jurisdictions have recently been given extensive planning powers, particularly in the form of legislatively mandated Community Strategic Plans (CSPs) which are to be arrived at through processes of community engagement. This paper examines the recently initiated and on-going community engagement process in the City of Greater Geraldton in Western Australia. It is argued that viewed alongside the process of consolidation and federally initiated regional institutions, an aggressive community engagement strategy is contributing to the reshaping of the region, in both economic and ideational terms.