Metropolis GZM is the most urbanized and densely populated part of the Silesian Voivodeship. Its central part is a multi-centre (“polycentric”) settlement system, consisting of cities and communes – mostly adjacent to each other – whose borders are becoming blurred, forming one urban/metropolitan body. Numerous investment areas, large housing estates, post-industrial heritage, as well as forests and green areas characterize the Metropolitan landscape.
Member communes differ in size, population density, financial possibilities and development potential, but they often share common problems and have the same development needs. Currently, the main challenges for each of the communes and the entire GZM are: low emissions, lagging behind in the development of public space, insufficient amount of cycling paths and degraded areas, as well as the phenomenon of urban sprawl and the issue of depopulation and loss of former functions by city centres.
The GZM area is constantly undergoing changes, including metropolization processes. This requires, among other things, that a long-term spatial policy be developed, focusing on improvement of the quality of life and development of metropolitan functions, as well as strengthening of the area’s spatial and socio-economic cohesion. The planning document titled “Framework Study of Conditions and Directions of Spatial Development of Metropolis GZM”, joint for all member communes, is expected to address these challenges. An effective communication system, coherent nature system, protection of the environment, landscape, cultural heritage and water resources are the factors determining the quality of the surrounding space and attractive living conditions.
Revitalization is also an important element of the spatial policy. It is understood as comprehensive remedial actions not only with regard to shaping space, but also in the social and economic dimension. One important aspect of revitalization is restoration of degraded post-industrial areas. These activities should be treated as an expression of rational management of space, which is a non-renewable resource.
GZM’s activity to improve the quality of space and its integrally related environment also results from the joint metropolitan document Strategic Action Programme Until 2022. It includes issues such as: Strategic Action Program Until 2022. It includes issues such as:
- rational water management, including the need for rainwater and small water retention management, preventing flooding and floods;
- integrated waste management, in particular the implementation of the concept of circular economy in its area;
- GZM – within its competences – can integrate and inspire initiatives in this area, including through the platform of good practices, disseminating proven and interesting solutions..
GZM – within its competences – can integrate and inspire initiatives in this area, including through the platform of good practices, disseminating proven and interesting solutions.