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Blue River Will Get Better Broadband, Thanks To Grant

Onward Eugene

The Blue River community will get more resilient internet access thanks to a national grant announced Tuesday. The rural area was devastated by the Holiday Farm Fire last September.

Blue River already had spotty internet before the fire, but it tore through the McKenzie River Valley and destroyed fiber optic cables and other infrastructure. Matt Sayre, with Onward Eugene, which won the grant, said the community needed funds in order to re-build internet services, only stronger.

“This isn’t going to solve all of the problems upriver, but it will make a significant positive impact,” Sayre said.

Sayre said the $300,000 grant will be put to use starting this week.

“We anticipate being able to deliver new internet services in a more resilient way to the McKenzie School and the surrounding areas in the fall of this year,” said Sayre.

The Blue River project is one of seven nationwide awarded broadband funding from US Ignite’s Project Overcome and the National Science Foundation. 

Copyright 2021 KLCC.

Rachael McDonald is KLCC’s host for All Things Considered on weekday afternoons. She also is the editor of the KLCC Extra, the daily digital newspaper. Rachael has a BA in English from the University of Oregon. She started out in public radio as a newsroom volunteer at KLCC in 2000.
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