|o Mayor||Daniel Beger|
|o City||13.31 km2 (5.14 sq mi)|
|o Density||3,700/km2 (9,700/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+1 (CET)|
|o Summer (DST)||UTC+2 (CEST)|
41-600 to 41-608
|Area code(s)||+48 32|
?wi?toch?owice [?fj?nt?xw?'vit?s?] (German: Schwientochlowitz; Silesian: ?wjyntochlowicy) is a town in Silesia in southern Poland, near Katowice. It is also the central district of the Upper Silesian Metropolitan Union metropolis, with a population of 2 million, and is located in the Silesian Highlands, on the Rawa River (tributary of the Vistula).
It is situated in the Silesian Voivodeship since its formation in 1999, previously in Katowice Voivodeship, and before then, of the Autonomous Silesian Voivodeship. ?wi?toch?owice is one of the cities of the 2.7 million conurbation - Katowice urban area and within a greater Silesian metropolitan area populated by about 5,294,000 people. The population of the city is 49,762 (2019).
Initially, ?wi?toch?owice was divided into two parts: the older Ma?e ?wi?toch?owice (Little ?wi?toch?owice) and newer Du?e ?wi?toch?owice (Big ?wi?toch?owice), which date back to the 12th and 13th centuries, respectively. The oldest known mention of ?wi?toch?owice comes from 1313, while the present-day district of Chropaczów was mentioned in 1295. Both settlements were located within the Duchy of Bytom of fragmented Poland and remained under the rule of the Piast dynasty until 1532, as part of the duchies of Bytom and Opole, before passing to the Kingdom of Bohemia. The village received Magdeburg rights at the turn of the 13th and 14th centuries. Until the end of the 17th century, the village of ?wi?toch?owice was owned by the families of ?wi?toch?owski, Paczy?ski, Kamie?ski, Rotter, Skall, Myszkowski and Guznar.
In 1742 the settlement was annexed by Prussia and from 1871 to 1922 it was part of Germany. Both parts of ?wi?toch?owice merged in 1790. In the 19th and first part of the 20th century the area rapidly industrialized (based on the numerous local resources, including coal and zinc), leading to the transformation of the village into an industrial settlement. In the early 20th century numerous Polish organizations were established there. During the Silesian Uprisings the present-day districts Lipiny and Pia?niki were captured by the Polish insurgents in 1920. In the 1921 Upper Silesia plebiscite, in ?wi?toch?owice 51.9% voted for Germany, while in Chropaczów 70.0% voted for Poland, and in Lipiny and Pia?niki combined 56.4% voted for Poland. In 1922 all named settlements were integrated with the re-established Polish state. In 1929 Zgoda became part of ?wi?toch?owice as its new district. In 1939 ?wi?toch?owice was granted city rights with effect from January 1, 1940, however, due to outbreak of World War II, the actual implementation of this law did not take place until 1947.
After the 1939 invasion of Poland, ?wi?toch?owice was occupied by the Germans, who established the Eintrachthütte concentration camp. In early 1945 it was occupied by the Soviets, who established the Zgoda labour camp.
After the war once again restored to Poland. In 1951 its city limits were extended with Chropaczów and Lipiny becoming new districts.
?wi?toch?owice is situated the middle of a highly populated area of Upper Silesia and is part of the Upper Silesian Metropolitan Union, the largest urban center in Poland and one of the largest in Europe.
?wi?toch?owice is situated in Silesian-Krakowian climate-zone. The annual precipitation totals to about 700 mm (28 in). The wettest month is July and the driest February. The average temperature is approximately -2.5 °C (27 °F) in January and 18 °C (64 °F) in July.
Brunate and swamp soils predominate in ?wi?toch?owice.
?wi?toch?owice has five administrative subdivisions:
The Silesian Uprisings Museum, devoted to the history of the Silesian Uprisings (1919-1921), is located in ?wi?toch?owice. In addition, the city has historical industrial architecture, town halls, churches, tenement houses and familoks.