Stavanger, Norway is situated on the southwestern coast of Norway (in the county of Rogaland); 600km from Oslo, the capital of Norway, and lies on a line of latitude level with the southern tip of Alaska. This United States Air Forces in Europe (USAFE) geographically separated unit (GSU) provides DoD and DoS personnel assigned to Norway, Joint Headquarters North (JHQ NORTH), Sweden and Denmark with transportation, communications, and personnel support. It manages logistics and Status of Forces Agreement support for collocated operating base (COB) and Marine Expeditionary Brigade (MEB) pre-positioning programs valued at over $1.2 billion. The facility population consists of 11 Active Duty Officers, 25 Active Duty Enlisted, 80 Family Members:, and 2 Civilian Employees.
In 1125, work began on the Stavanger Cathedral and in the same year Stavanger was officially recognized as a city. Its growth was slow, and by 1800 there were still only 2,000 inhabitants. By 1900 this number had increased to 30,000 due to thriving fishing and shipping industries. Before the second world war, production of tinned sardines was the town's most important industry. The post-war years proved difficult until the 1960's when Stavanger became the oil capital of Norway. Today, after 30 years of economic growth, it has developed into a modern cosmopolitan, multi-cultural and prosperous city. A large percentage of the Stavanger populous is oil workers from numerous companies and countires (the UK and US inhabitants are the large percentage of the foreign workers). The excellent economy has allowed for the preservation of the special architecture and individuality of the town. The result is a pleasant blend of new and old in a large, but friendly provincial town populated by some 105,000 making it Norways's 4th largest city.
The Norwegian coastline is 21,000 km long with hundreds of fjords and inlets. It is a rugged, mountainous country with limited rail and road communications when away from the main centers of population. Travel between Stavanger and Trondheim normally requires transportation via ferry or by tunnel. The city of Bergen is 125 km north of Stavanger but will take up to 6 hours by road and approsimately 600 NOK in ferry charges. Air travel is increasingly important and is the only really practical method of covering the large distance between the major cities. Olso is 9 hours away by road (12 hours in the winter snow). Norway, with an area of 386,958 square km has a population of around 4.5 million, most of which are located in the southern part of the country.
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