Metropolitan Association of Upper Silesia
and D?browa Basin
Location on the map of Poland
|o Head of Council||Kazimierz Karolczak|
|Area code(s)||+48 32|
The Metropolitan Association of Upper Silesia and D?browa Basin, usually referred to in Poland as the Silesian Metropolis (Polish: Górno?l?sko-Zagbiowska Metropolia; Metropolia Silesia), is an association of composed of 41 municipalities in the Polish Province of Silesia. The seat of the metropolitan council is Katowice, the largest city of the region and its capital. The Silesian Metropolis lies within one of the largest urban areas in the European Union.
The Metropolitan Association of Upper Silesia and D?browa Basin was created in June 2017 by a decree of Poland's Council of Ministers as an expansion of the already existing Metropolitan Association of Upper Silesia (Polish: Górno?l?sko-Zagbiowska Metropolia). That original union was formed ten year earlier in ?wi?toch?owice by 14 core cities. The purpose of the Metropolitan Association is to maintain a strong urban and industrially developed area with internationally competitive profile and unified management of all infrastructure. For those goals, the association receives 5% of income tax of its residents and participating municipalities.
The Metropolitan Association of Upper Silesia and D?browa Basin spans urban and suburban communities in the historical regions of Upper Silesia (the South-Eastern part of Silesia) as well as Lesser Poland's Zagbie D?browskie in the modern Silesian Voivodeship in southern Poland, within the northern portion of the Upper Silesian Coal Basin between the Vistula and Oder rivers.
It is located roughly 72 km West of Kraków and 260 km South-West of Warsaw. Other major population centers in relative proximity to the metropolis include: Ostrava (70 km), Vienna (290 km), Prague (320 km) and Bratislava (270 km).
The Metropolitan Association of Upper Silesia and D?browa Basin has extensive road network, including national highways A4 and A1, as well as S1 and S86 expressways. Warsaw is connected to the agglomeration through National Road no. 1, commonly known as Gierkówka (after Edward Gierek). The agglomeration is also connected to the Beskid Mountains in the south through two extensions of Gierkówka - National Road no. 1 and National Road no. 81. Drogowa Trasa ?rednicowa - an inter-urban, limited-access expressway - connects Gliwice and Katowice city centers.
The Metropolitan Association observes some of the highest traffic in Poland, with S86 between Katowice and Sosnowiec hosting 112,212 vehicles per day and A4 highway in Katowice seeing 100,983 vehicles per day.
The agglomeration boosts the highest density of railway lines in Poland. Katowice Train Station is the 8th busiest passenger station in the country, handling 11.9 million passengers in 2017 (up from 10.6 million in 2014), which corresponds to 32,800 passengers per day. Gliwice is the second-busiest station in the metropolis, with 10,300 passengers per day.
Regional and metropolitan trains are operated by Koleje ?l?skie. Most national and international trains are operated by Polish State Railways. Gliwice and Katowice are connected to Warsaw by a fast Express Intercity Premium train (commonly called Pendolino, after the train model that operates this line). Other major cities to which the metropolis is directly connected to by trains include Berlin, Prague, Vienna, Budapest and Bratislava.
Katowice Airport serves as the primary airport for the Metropolitan Association, and is located approx. 30 km North of downtown Katowice. Katowice Airport is the fourth-busiest airport in Poland in terms of passenger traffic, handling 4.8 million passengers in 2018. It is also second-busiest cargo airport in the country, serving 18,543 tonnes in 2018. It is a base for Wizz Air, Ryanair Sun, Blue Panorama Airlines, Enter Air, Smartwings, and Smartwings Poland. LOT Polish Airlines base some of their aircraft in Katowice during summer season.
The airport has daily feeder flights to Warsaw-Chopin (by LOT Polish Airlines, 4 flights), Frankfurt Airport (3 flights) and Munich Airport (1 flight, by Lufthansa). Another major cities with connections to Katowice Airport include London, Dubai, Amsterdam, Milan, Dublin, Rome, Barcelona, Lisbon, Stockholm, Athens, Kiev and Tel Aviv. In total, there is 61 regular and 44 charter destinations.
Original association was set up by 14 city counties that form the core of the metropolitan region: (Bytom, Chorzów, D?browa Górnicza, Gliwice, Jaworzno, Katowice, Mys?owice, Piekary ?l?skie, Ruda ?l?ska, Siemianowice ?l?skie, Sosnowiec, ?wi?toch?owice, Tychy, and Zabrze.
The association could not accept more members for legal reasons - under Polish law at that time only city counties could form such association. This changed in 2017 when the Polish government created new law designed specifically for this region's needs.
Currently 41 municipalities form the Metropolitan Association. Jaworzno, which was the founding member of the original union, decided to leave the new body, citing unwillingness to merge its public transportation company with the metropolitan one.
The official name of the association is "Górno?l?sko-Zagbiowska Metropolia" (Upper Silesian-D?browa Basin Metropolis"). This name was used on the official petition to create a metropolitan association, and later was used by the Polish Ministry of Interior in the final legal act published on June 30, 2017.
Previous name proposals included:
|journal=(help)See also: "Metropolia Silesia" (in Polish). Gzm.org.pl official webpage. Archived from the original on 1 September 2018. Retrieved 2009.Further information: "The cities of Silesian Metropolis promoted in Milan, Italy" [Miasta Metropolii Silesia promuj? si? w Mediolanie]. Webpage of local government. 6 June 2012. Archived from the original on 22 October 2014.