Over the past two years, the local government of Przemyśl have been working to draft “Changing Przemyśl Together”, a programme of tremendous importance to the city. It was awarded PLN 15 million in funding from the Norwegian Financial Mechanism.

Already the programme title points to the public involvement of multiple individuals and institutions in the process of drafting the underlying concept. The first stage of the “Local Development” Programme was open to applications from 255 local governments – having succeeded in passing that stage, Przemyśl became part of phase two, 53 local governments competing. In July 2021, the list of 29 winners was announced, Przemyśl among them. Over the coming days, the city will finalise the process of signing the agreement with the Ministry of Development Funds and Regional Policy.

This project is important for one other reason – designed as a pilot, all tasks planned as part thereof and the way they are implemented are to become a role model for other towns and cities resembling Przemyśl in that they are also struggling with a number of development-related issues. In view of the pilot nature of the project, its realisation shall receive assistance from a number of institutions, including the Association of Polish Cities, Institute of Urban and Regional Development, and Norwegian partners associated with the Norwegian Association of Local and Regional Authorities.

Flagship investment projects to be delivered as part of the programme include the following:

  • “Command Centre – Fortress of Przemyśl”: completion of construction works at the pavilion on the local ski slope, and adapting it to accommodate the needs of visitors to Fortress of Przemyśl facilities,
  • Opening a Social Activation Centre,
  • Launching a “Green Relaxation Zone” pilot programme.

Non-investment activities include, but are not limited to the IT Programming Academy at the State East European Higher School in Przemyśl, and the Entrepreneurial Przemyśl project designed to stimulate local entrepreneurship levels.

Of the PLN 15 million-plus in Norway Grant assistance funds awarded to the city, 60% can be allocated to investment undertakings, so-called “soft” activities eligible for the remaining amount.

On 2 December 2021, the Mayor of the City held a press conference at the Town Hall. He was joined by Deputy Director of the Association of Polish Cities’ Office Tomasz Potkański and Head of the Development, Investment and External Funds Department Beata Bielecka. The meeting was organised with intent to present details of delivering the project – or, in all actuality, an umbrella programme comprising multiple projects sharing the name “Changing Przemyśl Together”, and supported by Norwegian Financial Mechanism funding.