Os, Hordaland

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Os kommune
Municipality
View of Osøyro
View of Osøyro
Coat of arms of Os kommune
Coat of arms
Official logo of Os kommune
Hordaland within
Norway
Os within Hordaland
Os within Hordaland
Coordinates: 60°13′37″N 05°28′33″E / 60.22694°N 5.47583°E / 60.22694; 5.47583Coordinates: 60°13′37″N 05°28′33″E / 60.22694°N 5.47583°E / 60.22694; 5.47583
Country Norway
County Hordaland
District Midhordland
Administrative centre Osøyro
Government
 • Mayor (1999) Terje Søviknes (FrP)
Area
 • Total 139.56 km2 (53.88 sq mi)
 • Land 133.47 km2 (51.53 sq mi)
 • Water 6.09 km2 (2.35 sq mi)
Area rank 362 in Norway
Population (2014)
 • Total 18,678
 • Rank 59 in Norway
 • Density 139.9/km2 (362/sq mi)
 • Change (10 years) 27.8 %
Demonym Osing[1]
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
ISO 3166 code NO-1243
Official language form Nynorsk
Website www.os.hordaland.no
Data from Statistics Norway

Os is a municipality in Hordaland county, Norway. It is located in the Midhordland region, just south Norway's second-largest city, Bergen. Due to its proximity to Bergen, Os is experiencing strong population growth.[2] The administrative centre (and commercial centre) of Os is the village of Osøyro. It is the largest settlement in the municipality, with over 60% of the municipal residents living here. Other larger villages in Os include Hagavik, Halhjem, Søfteland, Søre Øyane, and Søvik.

History[edit]

Map of Os
View of the Lysefjorden in Os
Lysekloster Chapel

The parish of Os was established as a formannskapsdistrikt, the predecessor of today's municipalities, on 1 January 1838. It originally encompassed all of the land surrounding the Fusafjorden. In 1856, the eastern district of Os (across the fjord) was separated to form the new, separate municipality of Fusa. This left Os with 3,750 residents.

On 1 January 1907, the northern part of the municipality was separated to form the new municipality of Samnanger. This left Os with 3,188 residents. On 1 January 1964, the Bogstrand area of Fusa (population: 28) was transferred to Os. This was the only part of Fusa on the west side of the fjord. The borders of Os have not changed since that time.

During World War II, the Ulven concentration camp was used by the occupying Nazi German Army. It was located just northwest of Osøyro.

Name[edit]

The municipality is named after the old Os farm, where the first Os Church was built. The name is identical with the Old Norse word "óss" which means "mouth of a river"; referring to the Oselva River.[3]

Coat-of-Arms[edit]

The coat of arms is relatively modern, having been adopted in 1949 after a local competition. The arms are gold with a red background. The lower part of it shows one Oselvar, a boat design traditionally associated with the area. There is a small flower design above the boat.[4] [5]

Churches[edit]

The Church of Norway has one parish (sokn) within the municipality of Os. It is part of the Fana deanery in the Diocese of Bjørgvin.

Churches in Os
Parish (Sokn) Church Name Location of the Church Year Built
Os Os Church Osøyro 1870
Nore Neset Church Hagavik 2000

Government[edit]

Western shoreline of Os
Solstrand Hotel in Osøyro
View from the Solstrand Hotel, looking southeast

All municipalities in Norway, including Os, are responsible for primary education (through 10th grade), outpatient health services, senior citizen services, unemployment and other social services, zoning, economic development, and municipal roads. The municipality is governed by a municipal council of elected representatives, which in turn elect a mayor.

Municipal council[edit]

The municipal council (Kommunestyre) of Os is made up of 35 representatives that are elected to every four years. For 2011–2015, the party breakdown is as follows:[6]

Os Kommunestyre 2011–2015
Party Name Name in Norwegian Number of
representatives
  Labour Party Arbeiderpartiet 7
  Progress Party Framstegspartiet 13
  Conservative Party Høgre 6
  Christian Democratic Party Kristelig Folkeparti 2
  Centre Party Senterpartiet 1
  Liberal Party Venstre 2
  Local Lists Lokale lister 4
Total number of members: 35

Mayor[edit]

In 1999, the Progress Party won the local election, and Terje Søviknes became the first Progressive Party politician to hold the position of mayor in Os. He was re-elected in 2003, 2007, and 2011.

Before World War II, the municipality was led by Mayor Nils Tveit from 1916 to 1940. He also held the position briefly after the German occupation of Norway had ended.

Geography[edit]

The municipality of Os lies on the southwestern part of the Bergen Peninsula, south of the municipality of Bergen and southeast of the municipality of Samnanger. The Fusafjorden lies to the east, the Bjørnafjorden to the south, and the Lysefjorden lies to the west. The municipality of Fusa lies to the east (across the Fusafjorden), the municipality of Tysnes lies to the south (across the Bjørnafjorden), and the municipality of Austevoll lies to the west (across the Lysefjorden).

The southwestern part of Os includes many small islands including Skorpo, Strøno, and Innerøya. The village area of Søre Øyane lies on several small islands off the mainland shore.

The municipality is somewhat mountainous, especially in the northeastern part of the municipality. The mountain Sveningen is a tripoint boundary, marking the boundary point where the municipalities of Bergen, Os, and Samnanger meet. It is located in extreme northeastern Os. The mountains of Mosnuken and Lyshornet are both located in Os.

Culture[edit]

Oseana kunst- og kultursenter

The Oseana Art and Cultural Centre is located in Os. It hosts art and music events year-round. The building is fairly new and in 2011, it won the "Building of the Year Award" (Årets Bygg) for Norway.[7]

Industry[edit]

Os has a tradition of small boat building since the early 1800s. The Oselvar is the traditional boat of Os. This small wooden boat was named after its major important building site during the 18th century, at the mouth of the Oselva River. These boats have traditionally been used for everyday work and for traveling to church. These boats were designed as either sailboats or rowboats. They still build these boats the traditional way in Os, and tourists are able to visit and watch them work.[8]

The Oselvar is now the official boat of Norway. With its traditions, the boat has become a symbol of the nation. The boat is shown on the coat-of-arms of Os.

Hagavik, a village in Os municipality, also has a modern boat building company, Askeladden Boats AS. Askeladden is Norway's largest manufacturer of leisure boats.

Transportation[edit]

Halhjem 01

The European route E39 highway runs through Os from the city of Bergen (to the north) to the ferry quay at Halhjem, on the shore of the Bjørnafjorden. The quay has two different regularly-scheduled ferry routes that stop here to cross the Bjørnafjorden. There is a ferry from Halhjem to Våge on the island of Tysnesøya in Tysnes municipality, to the southeast. There is also a ferry (that is part of the E39 highway) from Halhjem to Sandvika, just north of the village of Fitjar in Fitjar municipality, to the south.

The Norwegian government is planning to build a bridge or tunnel crossing to provide road access across the Bjørnafjorden. When completed, the northern terminus will be in Os.[9]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Year Pop. ±%
1951 5,580 —    
1961 6,742 +20.8%
1971 8,162 +21.1%
1981 10,874 +33.2%
1991 12,781 +17.5%
2001 13,972 +9.3%
2011 17,210 +23.2%
2021? 21,508 +25.0%
2031? 25,107 +16.7%
Source: Statistics Norway.[10][11]

As of 1 January 2014, Os has a population of 18,678 which gives it a population density is 139.9 inhabitants per square kilometre (362 /sq mi), compared to a county average of about 30 people per square kilometre and a national average of about 15 people per square kilometre. About 80% of the population of Os lived in urban settlements. About 1.9% of the population were registered as unemployed; the county and national average is 2.6%. 26% of the workforce were employed in public administration. 2% were employed in the primary sector of economic activity, 28.2 in the secondary sector, and 69.3% in the tertiary sector.[12] In the period from 29 October to 4 November 2001, 45.7% of the workforce of Os commuted out of the municipality, mainly to Bergen. In the same period, Os received a daily average of 753 commuters from other municipalities, 15.8% of those employed in Os.[13] In 2006, Os had a daily out-commuting of 3,001 people.[12]

Notable residents[edit]

The famous violinist Ole Bull built his summerhouse in Os, on an island named Lysøen. The special building was inspired by his travels, especially his travels to the Middle East. Lysøen was originally owned by Lyse Abbey, the ruins of which still stand and are frequently visited.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Personnemningar til stadnamn i Noreg" (in Norwegian). Språkrådet. 
  2. ^ Os kommune i Hordaland (Os municipality)
  3. ^ Rygh, Oluf (1919). Norske gaardnavne: Nordre Bergenhus amt (in Norwegian) (12 ed.). Kristiania, Norge: W. C. Fabritius & sønners bogtrikkeri. p. 206. 
  4. ^ "Civic heraldry of Norway - Norske Kommunevåpen". Heraldry of the World. Retrieved 2014-08-09. 
  5. ^ "Oselvar Boats". 
  6. ^ "Members of the local councils, by party/electoral lists and municipality" (in Norwegian). Statistics Norway. 2011. 
  7. ^ Oseana i pengetrøbbel
  8. ^ Oselvaren (Os kommune)
  9. ^ Gir ikkje opp brumotstanden
  10. ^ Projected population - Statistics Norway
  11. ^ Per 1 January 1964, 28 persons were transferred from 1241 Fusa to 1243 Os.
  12. ^ a b "Figures on Os Municipality". Statistics Norway. 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-31.  (Norwegian)
  13. ^ "Commuting. Population and housing Census 2001". Statistics Norway. 2002. Retrieved 2008-05-31.  (Norwegian)

External links[edit]