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This work presents selected issues of transformations and development of downtown in a Polish metropolitan city assessed in view of its current condition. The research has analysed structural problems of downtown, with particular focus on the leading role of the sacred - i.e. cultural heritage potential and its relations with the profane, i.e. commercial investment projects. The thesis adopted for the research maintains that sustainable revitalisation of downtown in Polish cities translates into a harmony between cultural and commercial values, i.e. between the sacred and the profane, in compliance with the balanced environment principle. The presented research has been conducted on the example of the Poznan downtown. The quality of the existing spatial resources in Poznan downtown has been assessed with the use of the physiognomic delimitation and the value zoning methods on the basis of a set of spatial indices combined with such marketing methods as SWOT, DESIRE and AIDA. As a result, we have been able to draw up an identification map of the sacred - profane areas.
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