I don't know Szczecin.
What is your view of the article?
It's all true about the current situation and the looks of £ódź. However the problem doesn't lay in immigration to foreign countries. £ódź was industrial city, namely textile industry was settled there since the XIX century. The population was growing fast, until in the mid 90s, when the factories started to bankrupt. For some time the private, small business sector was alleviating the unemployment somewhat, but since the asian cheap products started to flood Poland, this sector also went into a crisis in the 2000s.
As a person born here I observe the gradual decay of £ódź. About ten years ago I actually considered £ódź as a nice place to live in. Back then £ódź was famouse of its main market street having the biggest density of club/pubs/bars etc in Poland, there was a lot of fan around, especially if one was a young person. Now I can't tell where one can go on Friday night because each new place is shut up after a year period. 10-15 ago there was a lot of small shop, services, you didn't see too much of "for rent/sell" signs, now they are commonplace... it's pretty harrowing when you see window panes of derilict shops covered with graffiti, and it's all around in the very centre of the city, which supposed to thrive. Many buildings are bulldozed, but it's actually a good thing since many of the old building are in such a harrowing state that it's all one can do, and even if they were not, they are usuallly a substandard place to inhabit for XXI century ;)
The salaries were always low in £ódź comparing to the rest of Poland, that's why, even though the flats are relatively cheap and the costs of the everyday life are not high, proffesionals move to nearby Warsaw, which ahs better career oppostunities. The close placement of Warsaw is a disadvantage for £ódź, as it's hard to compete with the capital city.
There is a lot pf pathology and social margin in £ódź. It's not a new phenomenom however. It just went a bit worser since the political transformation.
According to Wikipedia, it was the de facto capital from the end of WW2 until 1948 while Warsaw was being rebuilt.
I even had to check it.
Under this link to Polish wikipedia there is a chart with all Polish capital cities and dates.
There is no £ódź whatsoever. £ódź was mentioned as a temporary place of residance of the goverment (as well as Lublin, strangely, is included in the chart), however I can't say if a temporary residance might be called capital city of given country. If you ask a Pole on a street if £ódź was for once a capital city of Poland surely one will tell you it wasn't, however most are aware that because of war damages of Warsaw, it was near miss that £ódź would have became one.