The evolution of small towns in south-western Poland

Irena Niedźwiecka-Filipiak, Zuzanna Borcz, Liliana Zielińska



The article comprises partial research results which focused on small towns founded before and after 1945 in the following provinces: Lubuskie, Lower Silesian, Opolskie and Silesian. Each of these towns had its own specific history. The majority of small towns from this area have mediaeval origins and a characteristic spatial layout with a market, sometimes a town hall and dominants of church towers. After World War II many of them lost their town privileges, sometimes irrevocably, but some of them regained them after some time. Another observed phenomenon was the fact that certain small towns were incorporated into industrial city agglomerations while other small towns joined together. In the recent years in the Silesian province we can observe a reverse trend, i.e. certain districts – former independent small towns which were previously incorporated into big cities – become separated and get or try to regain their town privileges. These phenomena have an influence on the spatial system of towns and on their development.

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