Situation, population and habitation
Situated in the southern part of Oppland surrounding Lake Randsfjorden Gran is the largest municipality in the area of Hadeland.
Most people live in the southern part of the community with a distance to Oslo of 60-70 kilometres. Here one finds the three centers Brandbu, Jaren and Gran with a total of 5000 inhabitants.
January 1. 2012 the population of Gran was 13 493 inhabitants. The expected population growth rate is increasing. Total area, 760 square kilometres, of this 63 percent is forest and woodlands, 10 percent is agricultural land and 27 percent water and miscellaneous purposes.
Industry and service - employment
The municipality of Gran has long traditions in agriculture and forestry. Even with only 6 percent of the population engaged in farming, agricultural production directly and indirectly contributes much more to the total production in terms of workforce.
Industry and construction work employ 16 percent of the working population and 78 percent work within commerce and services. Approximately 2000 persons work outside Gran, of which 50 percent commute to Oslo and 25 percent to neighbour communities. The largest industrial plants have from 100 up to 500 employees and they produce services and commodities in electronics, ventilation, footwear, forestry, transport and energy. Otherwise there are several smaller and larger factories and workshops around in the area. A 240 decar industrial site at Jaren has been partly taken for this purpose. The municipality of Gran assists industry and commerce and the establishment of new business enterprises in Gran.
The two larger centres, Brandbu and Gran offer most services to be expected in a small town. Commerce employs about 630 persons in Gran. Four hotels with a total of 350 beds direct their marketing efforts towards the conference business to a large degree.
Rv.4, the main road from Oslo to Gjøvik, Toten and Land, passes through Gran, and so does the Gjøvik-Oslo train, stopping at Gran, Jaren and Bleiken stations.
A new road connection across from Hønefoss to Gardermoen Airport was completed in 2003, and the travel time to the airport is now 40 minutes from central parts of Gran. This East-west connection is an important thoroughfare in Norway, placing Gran at a more central place than before, right in the middle of a green spot and still close to the communications centres.
Housing, schools and kindergartens
The municipal board in Gran has established a decentralized pattern of housing, schools and kindergartens. Besides municipal building sites in the three centres, as well as in Grymyr and Bjoneroa, Gran offers the possibility of building in other areas, outside the municipal sites. The primary school system comprises in 2006/07 1144 pupils, divided on 10 schools - all of them offer both schooling and a leisure-arrangement after school hours. The kindergarten service is well provided for. There are three secondary schools with 532 pupils, one high schools and a folk high school.
Gran has got a vivid and varied cultural life with an excellent choice of outdoor activities. There are many popular associations, especially a number of choirs, musical bands, ranking high on a national level, and a jazz club. Handball, soccer, skating, skiing, horse-racing and - riding, is popular sports. There are numerous opportunities for out-of-door-sports and activities all around the year.
A library service has been established in Gran and Brandbu. A cinema has been built in Brandbu.
Old roads which remind one of the ancient thoroughfares pass through one of the most beautiful cultural landscapes of Eastern Norway, passing by Medieval buildings, such as the Sister Churches and the Stone House at Granavollen, St.Peter’s Church and the Hadeland Folk Museum at Tingelstad.
Hiking roads have been adapted for walkers, giving information on the cultural sights, nature, and traditions in Hadeland. A marina and beaches are found at Lake Randsfjorden. Øståsen (the eastern forests) and Veståsen (the western forests) are recreational areas with numerous little fishing lakes. Veståsen offers some of the best canoeing areas in Norway.
In the winter 200 kilometres of well prepared ski -tracks are prepared for your benefit, of these are 21 kilometres flood-lit tracks. There is a communal skating rink at Brandbu, a regional ski arena at Lygna, and other smaller ski arenas spread over Gran.
Historical sites are Granavollen with the Sister Churches from Medieval times and the Stone House - a 700 year old stone building, where the origin is unknown. The Viking king Halvdan the Black drowned in the bay of Røykenvik and is buried in Halvdan`s Hill - according to Snorri Sturluson his entrails lies in the soil of Gran- in the area today used by the local museum. St. Peter´s church nearby, another Medieval church with a very fine 16th century interior is also situated in the Tingelstad area.
The Mayor of Gran is Willy Westhagen. The municipal board has 27 members. The acting Town Clerk is Henning Antonsen.