area around the URMP experienced a series of difficulties. Moreover, the studies were designed to classify the urban areas neighbouring the URMP based on the features of spatial and functional transformation identified in these areas.
Study area and methodology
Łódź is the third largest city in Poland according to number of inhabitants (698,688 in 2016). At the same time, it is one of the fastest shrinking cities in Europe due to the economic crisis in the 1990s following the systemictransformation in Poland and in other CEE countries. The reasons for the
Jadwiga Biegańska, Stefania Środa-Murawska, Zenija Kruzmetra and Frank Swiaczny
country, and its socio-demographic, economic and infrastructural development broadly followed the patterns characteristic of this part of Europe. Overall, however, the post-war period until 1989, when the systemictransformations began, was characterised by an intensified migration of the rural population to cities and by their socio-economic development, driven in particular by industrialisation. Since the 1990s urbanisation has been halted, and the process of suburbanisation began ( Biegańska, Szymańska 2013 ). To a large extent, it was the effect of the changing
(the flow of time). The first study in this field was the analysis of the country’s regional structure in railway freight flows ( Chojnicki 1961 ). The professor also dealt with the analysis of the network of regional settlement systems, the standard of living of the population in reference to the economic development level, economic changes in Poland and the process of systemictransformation (Chojnicki, Czyż, Parysek 1997 ), post-modernist development ( Chojnicki 1992a ), the spatial structure of Polish science and education ( Czyż, Chojnicki 1997 ) and a