It was a sad day on Monday when the final milk tanker drove through the gates at Dennington's Fonterra factory. The last production run overseen by 70 staff was a far cry from the plant's glory days of about 800 workers during the 1970s.
Staff at the site, which has housed a milk factory for more than 100 years, will continue on until the end of the month. But for them, Dennington and the broader community, it is the end of a significant era.
The closure, like the demise of Warrnambool's 20th-century textile icons Fletcher Jones and the woollen mill, is a blow to the region's economy, jobs market and social fabric.
But the city didn't die when Fletcher Jones and the mill closed. Our economy diversified. Ironically it was the dairy industry which grew; tourism, health and meat processing also expanded.
Some other key developments this week play into the narrative.
Warrnambool's property market is surging. This week we revealed developers were looking to build 93 apartments on Mortlake Road in the city's north. Today we reported rural land prices are also roaring along after a $2million-plus auction at Woodford.
Throw in German retail giant Kaufland's announcement earlier this year that it is looking to open in the city's east, the $11m Reid Oval redevelopment and $20m city library project and the economy's future looks bright. Don't forget that all this comes after the city's car dealers invested more than $30 million in recent years. One door closes, another opens.
There's a lot to be optimistic about despite the other big news of the week - the acrimonious mayoral election that didn't paint the city in a good light. Councillors need to remember their actions can impact Warrnambool's standing and residents' confidence in their ability to manage the city's progress. Opportunity knocks.