- The Influence of a Metropolis on regional Development    click here to open paper content517 kb
by    Fiedorowicz, Kazimierz & Fiedorowicz, Jacek | jkmfiedorowicz@wp.pl   click here to send an email to the auther(s) of this paper
Short Outline
Currently in Poland 12 metropolitan territories concentrate more than 41% of the population and occupy 15% of the area of the country. The following will be discussed:
- Plans and conceptions of spatial development of the country;
- Factors influencing city development and the process of metropolisation;
- To which degree can the EU policy of uniformity, through the support of metropolises, cause faster regional development.
The settling network in Poland can be characterized as polycentric. This claim is supported by the fact that there exist 9 to 12 bigger cities or city complexes of agglomeration character. These cities fulfill or will fulfill metropolitan functions. Currently, the phenomena of cities metropolization is becoming one of the major factors of regional development. Moreover, the European Union Cohesion Policy has started to influence to a greater extent the regional development including development of metropolitan cities. Within the scope of this policy, big cities i.e. the cities with metropolitan functions, are major beneficiaries. The importance of metropolitan cities is increasing. The phenomenon of metropolization has become one of the main factors of regional development.

The presentation will focus on three issues:
- Previous concepts of spatial development of the country, including issues related to metropolitan cities in these concepts,
- New phenomena influencing the settling network, including the intensification of the metropolization process,
- UE Cohesion Policy related to metropolitan regions and its influence on metropolitan cities in Poland.

The so far prepared in Poland concepts of spatial development of the country have distinguished metropolitan issues either in the form of urban agglomerations, or cities of international importance or metropolitan regions. It was based on indicating which cities were already those ones with metropolitan functions and which are potential metropolises. Planning for metropolitan areas was also introduced. However, the implementation of this concept was worse which was the consequence of not setting apart administrations for metropolitan areas.
Within the Cohesion Policy of the European Union, it is stated that metropolitan areas a play key role in the realization of this policy goals as well as the goals of Lisbon Strategy. Therefore, it is proposed to set apart metropolitan areas and introduce them as the subject of this policy. Initially, 83 ( 6 in Poland) metropolitan areas are set apart in UE-25.
In the program preparations in Poland the following types of metropolitan areas were identified: Metropolitan area of Warsaw fulfills international functions. Six metropolitan areas already fulfill national functions. These are: Gdańsk, Katowice, Łódź, Poznań i Wrocław. The other two metropolitan areas are in the course of fulfilling national functions. These are: Bydgoszcz-Toruń and Szczecin. Moreover three cities Białystok, Lublin and Rzeszów are considered potential metropolises. Together there are 12 cities (or urban agglomerations) which accommodate more than 40% of the country’s population and 2/3 of urban population.
For 16 regions (NUTS-2 Level), regions with metropolitan cities are listed on top of the list according to their level of development. It means that the metropolization functions of cities are the main factor of regional development in Poland.
The preparation consists of illustrations including: European network of metropolitan cities, metropolises in Poland and chosen examples of development for metropolitan areas.

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