Wagga will need more comfortable and convenient XPT passenger train services to meet its growing population and help attract more investment, according to a local branding expert.
Mariam Rehman, the founder of The cre8tive co. branding and advertising agency, said a recent experience booking tickets for the Wagga to Melbourne service prompted her call for change.
One of just two options on a weekday was a sleeper service ticket for more than $188 leaving just before 3am.
"I was born here, I'm 20 years old now and doing the work that I do and getting to where I am, I have seen a bit of a stigma behind the name 'Wagga'," she said.
"A lot of people are doing what they can to change that but I feel that the government is not seeing much potential.
"The feeling that you get using a regional XPT service is not 'I want to go to Wagga'."
Ms Rehman said the "very weird timings" for trains and the lack of Wi-Fi internet or security cameras in carriages was making one of the city's main public transport options less appealing to potential new residents.
A NSW TrainLink spokesperson said the network had 68 cameras "with room to grow as needed"
The spokesperson said the network had a program to "ensure our regionally-based employees are appropriately accredited and equipped to deal with anti-social behaviour and violence".
Committee 4 Wagga chief executive Alan Johnston said the key to improved service frequency was to get Wagga on the state government map for future 'fast rail'.
"The fast rail feasibility study at the moment does not include Wagga, which Wagga City Council and ourselves aren't horribly excited about," Mr Johnston said.
"Obviously the XPT is based on capital city to capital city, and we get the benefit of midnight and two o'clock-type services."
"We want to see ourselves in that feasibility study and for it to become reality sooner rather than later."
Ms Rehman said putting Wagga on the fast rail feasibility map "sounds like it will take 10 or 20 years" and wanted to put pressure on decision-makers for short-term changes.
"I am quite proud of being in Wagga but I want to say 'we are doing this, we are innovators'," she said.
Wagga Business Chamber president Danielle Wait said XPT issues had not been brought up with her directly by chamber members but "good access" was needed for business.
"I think access to the city is important if we're looking at attracting new businesses or even residents who are looking to relocate," she said.
"We are looking at the Bomen special activation precinct, which is expected to bring significant investment to the town.
"We are hoping that people see Wagga as a great place to work and help us achieve the 100,000 population goal."