Ola Dahl’s Street

(Norwegian version) This is one of Otta’s oldest streets. It takes you from Storgata (The Main Street) near the railway line, past the park, and turns westwards past Thon Hotel before reaching a bicycle and pedstrians’ lane following Riksveg 15.

Text: Per Erling Bakke and Ivar Teigum

Ola Dahl, 1923–2004.

Ola Dahl was born in 1923, and grew up at Selsverket. At age 17 he started as an apprentice in the railway company, Otta Railway Station became his workplace for the next 25 years. From 1952 he represented the Social Democratic Party in the local council. At age 32 he was elected mayor of the Sel community, a position he held for twenty years.

In his capacity as mayor Ola Dahl took a firm interest in the industrial development at Otta. At his initiative and for public means a large production hall was erected in the area called Øya. Later a building company was established with himself as manager along with his function as mayor. Altogether 500 people were employed in the Øya area.

For seven years Ola Dahl was a board member in the Norwegioan Social Democratic Party. But as local and regional affairs lay nearest to his heart, he never aspired to a seat in Parliament. His political career ended in 1991 after 16 years as county governor.

Ola Dahl served his country as a Resistance man during the war, and later as a politician for forty years. For his service he was decorated by the King, and by the Norwegian Association of Local and Regional Authorities.