Courier Letters to the Editor

Update on Upcountry Fiber

To the Editor,

Most of you the Pickens Courier story entitled, “Upcountry Fiber receives federal grant”. Blue Ridge Electric/ UpCountry Fiber received a $12 million federal grant to push-out its internet service in Pickens County. In total, Blue Ridge will invest $40 to $50 million in Pickens County

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building out its high speed internet service and lay over 2,000 miles of fiber in our county.

First, I want to thank the Blue Ridge Co-op’s board, its managers and all its employees for all the work they’ve done in the Pickens area. A very large majority of the area now has this lightening fast internet service. Pickens was the most under-served area of the county and turned out to be one of the first on the list. Thank you.

Reading the article, most of the focus with this next phase will be in Six Mile in 2024, then Liberty in 2025 and the rest of Dacusville.

Representing the Pickens area, the questions I get pertain to the un-served areas that remain in my district. One area is Walhalla Highway, both above and below the highway. As I wrote before the substations in the Pickens area are at AR Lewis and Holly Springs schools, Tally Bridge Rd and Highway 11, Griffin Church on Highway 8 and at the School District Administration building.

Blue Ridge will focus on getting the substation at Ponderosa Park in Six Mile up and running and then build another at Gap Hill Road (just west of SC 133). Those substations and their fiber lines are scheduled to be installed by the end of 2024. This will primarily light up Six Mile, greater Six Mile, and the Mountain View area with high speed internet. However, these stations will also reach the western part of my district along Walhalla Highway – areas like Mile Creek Rd, Brandy Lane, Stephens Road and others.

On the other side of my district, out Glassy Mountain way, soon they will start work to light up Chinquapin Road. Other spots in that area will depend on the demand and whether or not Blue Ridge Electric serves that area. (Don’t shoot the messenger on this, as I am just relaying what I’m learning.)

Also keep in mind, if your area is not served by Blue Ridge Electric and it doesn’t have Blue Ridge infra-structure in place, it is unlikely the service will make it out your way in this phase of the project. If you want the service and are on the Blue Ridge grid, go to and put in your address to let them know you want the service. Demand also plays a role as well.


Alex Saitta

Pickens, SC