Rzeszow has a population of 185.123 (2015) which in contrast to other towns in Poland - with the only other exception Warsaw - is increasing every year. The growing tendency in the number of inhabitants is due to the positive natural increase. Rzeszow is a city of young people: 67% of the population are in working age and 50% of the inhabitants are not older than 33 years old.
Statistical data confirms that the city is an important regional centre of economic growth. The leading sectors in the city’s economy are: aviation, computer science, pharmaceuticals, chemical processing, outsourcing and tourism. The four special economic zones offer favourable conditions to innovative companies organised in clusters, such as the Aviation Valley cluster, the Information Technology Cluster, the Cluster of Renewable Energy (among others: photovoltaic) and the Cluster of Good Quality of Life.
The city is located at the intersection of historically developed transport routes - the current borders of Ukraine and Slovakia are only 90km away - and plays an important role as a hub in the south-east region of the country due to its well-developed transport infrastructure. However, one of the most important environmental issues is the transit traffic which produces air pollution exceeding permissible levels. In 2015 the city completed 3 projects regarding public transport aiming at the integration of the public transport for the city and the surrounding area, introducing intelligent public transport system and the improvement of the system in the city centre. Some parts of the 119 km bicycle road are connected to the ‘Green Velo’ network, linking Rzeszow with 5 Polish provinces.
Rzeszow is also a learning city. In a study ranking Polish cities, Rzeszow came out as 1st best in EU, when comparing the number of students to general number of inhabitants. There are 60.000 students attending the higher educational institutions in the city (University of Rzeszów, Rzeszów University of Technology, University of Information Technology and Management, School of Law and Public Administration, Rzeszów School of Engineering and Economics). In addition, a new Regional Vocational Training Centre for modern technologies was launched in 2014. The Municipality and the educational institutions work closely together in order to best serve the needs of the labour market and of the new investors.
The city’s goal is to expand the brand “Rzeszow capital of innovation” in the 2014-2020 programming period which is to cover smart economy, smart mobility, smart environment and smart living.