THE PUBLIC SPACE IN POLISH TOWNS – VECTORS OF DEVELOPMENT AND FACTORS OF DEGRADATION
References: 3rd International Multidisciplinary Scientific Conference on Social Sciences and Arts SGEM2016, www.sgemsocial.org , SGEM2016 Conference Proceedings, ISBN 978-619-7105-54-4 / ISSN 2367-5659, Apr 06-09, Book 4, Vol.2, 781-788 pp, DOI: 10.5593/SGEMSOCIAL2016/HB42/S07.098
The topic of the research are changes in the public space in Polish cities with population of over 500, 000. The main purpose is evaluating the scale of these changes as well as the range of influence of particular factors on transforming the public space. The research aims to support spatial policy in adjusting city spaces to changing social needs of citizens. The paper gives answers to the question which asks about the impact of social, economic or lawful conditions on transforming public space and about different ways this space fulfills its primary role.
The crucial feature of the analized areas are the connections between a social behavior and those attributes of physical space which favour it. That is why, the described interdisciplinary issues in a vital way refer to the research results connected with the management of city space, sociology and environmental psychology. On the other hand, the chosen case studies, conducted by means of inductive method, give basis to the quality analysis of results and recognize general phenomena taking place in public space.
Economical factors and increase in mobility, have a noticeable impact on changes in public spaces. The economical changes resulting from globalization and political transformations in Poland in 1989, have contributed to reduction of the meaning of common good and dominance of economical objectives over social ones. This has caused intensification of privatization processes in the public space. Furthermore, numerous means of transportation and growing mobility of citizens, have diminished the meaning of connections based on territoriality.
Public space is primarily the area of social activities. On the one hand, the condition of public space reflects the level of social development and, on the other hand, it influences the life quality of citizens and the prosperity of the city. Multiple examples of degradation or even disappearance of some of these areas in Polish cities indicate a crisis. Simultaneously, new forms of satisfying social needs in public space come into being.
These phenomena need adjustment of space and social policy to present conditions. Identification of the problems is significant to formulating general recommendations which involve forming public space and indicating appropriate solutions.
Keywords: public space, spatial policy
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