|• Mayor (2005)||Laura Seltveit (Ap)|
|• Total||546 km2 (211 sq mi)|
|• Land||509 km2 (197 sq mi)|
|Area rank||195 in Norway|
|• Rank||195 in Norway|
|• Density||10/km2 (30/sq mi)|
|• Change (10 years)||-6.2 %|
|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
|• Summer (DST)||CEST (UTC+2)|
|ISO 3166 code||NO-1135|
|Official language form||Nynorsk|
Sauda (help·info) is a municipality and industrial town in Rogaland county, Norway. It is part of the region of Ryfylke. Sauda was separated from Suldal in 1842. Sauda participates in the Haugaland Council and is under the jurisdiction of the Haugaland District Court.
The municipality (originally the parish) is named after the old Sauda farm (Old Norse: Sauðar), since the first church was built there. The name is the plural form of sauðr which means "spring" or "issue of water". Before 1918, the name was written "Saude" (or "Søvde").
The coat-of-arms was granted on 14 May 1976. The arms show a river as a symbol for hydroelectricity. Historically, power was generated by watermills, providing a possibility for the development of an industry in the village. Presently, the power is used for melting metal ore in smelters in the municipality.
Archaeological excavation in Saudasjøen shows that people have been living in Sauda since the latest Ice Age. In 1349, the Plague/Black Death wiped out about two thirds of the population in Sauda, causing a decline in both population and economy. Despite this, the population was increasing during the medieval time, and a new type of industry started to grow. Along the fjord the power from several waterfalls was used to build and run sawmills, and large-scale lumber production was started. People from all over the world, especially from the Netherlands, started to trade with the citizens. This resulted in major ship traffic, giving impetus to further development of the villages and farms in Sauda. By the end of the 19th century, a new type of adventure would change the lives of the inhabitants forever. The mining industry started in the mountains of Hellandsbygd, making Sauda a small industrial town, working place and trading center for the surrounding region. But it wasn't until 1910 the real adventure started. The American company Electric Furnace Company (EFP) began the construction of Europe’s largest smelting plant. This could only be done because of the large number of waterfalls and rivers that made it possible to build power plants situated a short distance from the smelter, which uses large amounts of electricity.
Sauda's time as a farming village was over, and the people of today still live on the foundation of the new town that emerged. By the end of World War II, the Germans had finished building a large Aluminum Melting Plant in Saudasjøen, but the production was moved to Årdal in 1946. The remaining buildings were demolished by the municipality in the 1950s, leaving the industrial area in Saudasjøen empty for decades. In the 1980s, a glass production factory was established together with a couple of mechanic production factories. The population of Sauda reached its peak in the mid-1960s, approximately 6,700 inhabitants, but Sauda was not granted township status until the year 1998.
The town of Sauda is the fifth largest in Rogaland with 4,290 inhabitants (2006), and the city center is home to Northern Europe's largest melting plant, Eramet Norway AS. It is situated in the end of the fjord called Saudafjorden.
Sauda is located at the end of a fjord, with very mountainous terrain, with mountains like Skaulen (1,560 metres or 5,120 feet), and Kyrkjenuten (1,620 metres or 5,310 feet) in proximity. The town is located only about 2 hours by boat from Stavanger, 3 hours from Bergen, and 5 hours from Oslo. It is also one of the biggest ski resorts on the west coast of Norway. The town of Sauda is located on flat land, a delta created by the rivers that empty into the fjord just outside the town centre.
Sauda has a well-developed nightlife, which is suited for all adult ages. There are young-adult bars, as well as more mature-adult bars accessible. A movie theater, many tourist attractions and restaurants exist as a way of relaxing after skiing. However, the most highly recommended first stop is the après-ski at Sauda Skisenter. Also notable athletes; alpine racers, and summer-winter athletes call Sauda home. Hildeborg Juvet Hugdal, known as the World's Strongest Woman resides in Sauda.
- Rondahaugen - with views over the city and out towards Stavanger
- Sauda kirke, Solbrekk kapell, Hellandsbygd kapell and Saudasjøen kapell - local churches
- Allmannajuvet - old mines with guided tour
- Sauda Smelteverk - melting plant that is still active, guided tour after appointment
- Nordag - former aluminium melting plant in Saudasjøen
- Old Graveyard in Saudasjøen - containing tombs of Russian POWs who died when building the Nordag aluminium melting plant during World War II
- Tveittunet in Saudasjøen - old refurbished estate in Saudasjøen
- Jonegarden på Hustveit - old refurbished farm and a lumber mill
- Løyning - old farm about 10 kilometers away from Sauda
- Risvoldtunet - food service, conference center, guided tour on a mini power plant
- Åbøbyen - best conserved North-American styled township in Norway
- Honganvikfossen - water falls
- Svandalsfossen - water falls
- Jetegrytene in Åbødalen - rivers and falls
- Sauda museum - collection in downtown Sauda featuring local heritage
- Industriarbeidermuseet - museum about the life of local workmen (1920s to 1950s)
- Fagerheimsaminga - exhibition of carved wooden figures in Saudahallen
- City walk - arrangement in summer time with a guided tour through the city of Sauda
- City center - during winter, heated streets are free of snow
- Bjørn Eidsvåg, priest and musician
- Kjartan Fløgstad, author
- Svein Mathisen (1952–2011), Football league and national team player
- Hans Frette (1927–1989), Member of the Parliament of Norway
- Jakob Aano, Member of the Parliament of Norway
- Torfinn Opheim, former mayor and member of the Parliament of Norway
- Odd Bondevik, Bishop of Møre in the Church of Norway
- Brede Halsnes, Professional Alpine skier and Internet entrepreneur
- Genette Sekse, World Famous Skiier and All-Star Employee for the Minnesota Vikings
- Obrestad, Tor (1972) Sauda! Streik! ISBN 82-05-05351-0
- Fløgstad, Kjartan (1990) Arbeidets lys : tungindustrien i Sauda gjennom 75 år ISBN 82-521-3597-8
- Berntsen, Harald (1987) 100 år med Folkets Hus ISBN 82-10-03042-6
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