Some of the region's key figures will meet next week to discuss the possibility of making Port Kembla the Royal Australian Navy's new home.
The meeting has been arranged by Illawarra-based senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, who first floated the option late last year. In November 2014, Senator Fierravanti-Wells made a submission to the defence white paper on the nation's future defence capabilities.
In the submission, she suggested some or all of the ships at Fleet Base East - the official name for Sydney's Garden Island - could be relocated to Port Kembla.
There are 1900 naval personnel and roughly 1200 non-naval personnel stationed at Garden Island so a move to Port Kembla would give an undeniable economic boost to the region.
"I didn't seek input from people before I put this out," Sen Fierravanti-Wells said of her submission.
"I just wanted to put the idea out, start the ball rolling. Now I'd like to see the momentum gathering for support and for potentially the production of a more detailed document that can be used to lobby governments - state and federal."
To continue that momentum the senator has invited politicians, trade unionists and business leaders across the Illawarra to a meeting on Wednesday.
Sen Fierravanti-Wells said the meeting was to ensure the proposal had the backing of the region. "I think it is important to make sure that anything I take forward has to really be something that the key people in the Illawarra are on board with," she said.
"I'm doing this because I think this is good for the Illawarra and the future of the Illawarra."