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City of Columbia

  •   State: 
    South Carolina
    Richland County
      County FIPS: 
    34°0′2″N 81°2′5″W
      Area total: 
    140.68 sq mi (364.37 km²)
      Area land: 
    137.81 sq mi (356.93 km²)
      Area water: 
    2.87 sq mi (7.44 km²)
    302 ft (92 m)
  •   Latitude: 
      Dman name cbsa: 
    Columbia, SC
    Eastern Standard Time (EST) UTC-5:00; Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) UTC-4:00
      ZIP codes: 

    Columbia, Richland County, South Carolina, United States

  •   Population: 
      Population density: 
    991.45 residents per square mile of area (382.80/km²)
      Household income: 
      Unemployment rate: 
  •   Sales taxes: 
      Income taxes: 

Columbia is the capital of the U.S. state of South Carolina. With a population of 136,632 at the 2020 census, it is the second-largest city in the state. The name Columbia is a poetic term used for the United States, derived from the name of Christopher Columbus, who explored for the Spanish Crown. In 1860, the South Carolina Secession Convention took place in Columbia; delegates voted for secession, making South Carolina the first state to leave the Union in the events leading up to the Civil War. The city is located about 13 miles (21 km) northwest of the geographic center of the state, and is the primary city of the Midlands region. It lies at the confluence of the Saluda River and the Broad River, which merge at Columbia to form the Congaree River. The area has benefited from Congressional support for Southern military installations. Columbia is the site of Fort Jackson, the largest United States Army installation for Basic Combat Training. Twenty miles to the east of the city is McEntire Joint National Guard Base, which is used as a training base for the 169th Fighter Wing of the South South Carolina Air National Guard. The City of Columbia was incorporated as a village in 1805 and then as a city in 1854. It is home to the University of. South Carolina, the state's flagship public university and the largest in the. state. It was first chartered in 1786 and completed in 1800, making it one of the earliest canals in the United. States.


Columbia is a city in South Carolina, United States. It was chosen as the new state capital in 1786 due to its central location in the state. The Santee Canal connected the Santee and Cooper rivers in a 22-mile-long (35 km) section. In 1801, South Carolina College (now the University of South Carolina) was founded in Columbia. Columbia was incorporated as a village in 1805 and then as a city as a result in 1854. Its population was nearing 1,000 shortly after the start of the 19th century. The city is located on the fall line of the Piedmont region, which is unnavigable for boats sailing upstream. It is one of the first planned cities in the U.S. to have a population of more than 1000 people. It has been home to the South Carolina Collegiate Institute for higher education since 1828. It also hosts the S.C. College of Pharmacy and Dentistry, which was established in 1838. The town's name is derived from the word "Columbia" which means "the city" or "the place" in the English language. Its name was changed to Columbia in 1856 after a vote by the state senate. It became the state capital after the 1786 vote, and was named after the Congaree River, which runs through the city. The state legislature first met there in 1790, and it was the site of the state college from 1801 to 1816.


Columbia has a humid subtropical climate (Köppen Cfa), with relatively cool to mild winters and hot and humid summers. The area averages 55 nights below freezing and is subject to temporary cold spells during the winter, but extended cold or days where the temperature fails to rise above freezing are both rare. The USDA places Columbia in the 8a Hardiness Zone. Columbia is located roughly halfway between the Atlantic Ocean and the Blue Ridge Mountains, at an elevation around 292 ft (89 m) The city's current promotional slogan describes Columbia as "Famously Hot" In the summer months, Columbia usually has the greatest high temperature in the state. Approximately of Columbia's land area, 81.2 square miles (210 km²), is contained within the Fort Jackson Military Installation, much of which consists of uninhabited training grounds. The actual inhabited area for the city is slightly more than 50square miles (130 km²) The metropolitan statistical area of Columbia is the second-largest in South Carolina; it has a population of 817,488 according to the 2016 Census estimates. The city is located in the Sandhills region, which includes three rivers: the Broad, Saluda, and the Columbia Riverbanks Region. The fall line, the boundary between the upland Piedmont region and the Atlantic Coastal Plain, across which rivers drop as falls or rapids, was the farthest inland point of river navigation in the early days of navigation. The energy of falling water also powered Columbia's early mills.


As of the 2010 U.S. census, there were 129,272 people, 52,471 total households, and 22,638 families residing in the city. The racial makeup of the city was 51.27% White, 42.20% Black, 2. 20% Asian, 0.25% Native American, 1.50% from other races, and 2.00% from two or more races. The Southern Baptist Convention has 241 congregations and 115,000 members. The Catholic Church has 14 parishes, including the Basilica of Saint Peter, the state's only minor basilica. There are three different Islamic musjids providing places of worship for more than 600 Muslim families living in Columbia. There is one Greek Orthodox Church in Columbia, and two Hindu Temples. Columbia is see city of the Episcopal Diocese of Upper South Carolina, and Trinity Episcopal Cathedral is located across the street from the state capitol. The Evangelical Lutheran Church has 71 congregations, and the Presbyterian Church in America has 22 congregations. The city is home to the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir Columbia, one of the largest Hindu temples in the United States. Columbia has a population of 136,632 people, and as of the 2020 United States census, the population is expected to rise to 136,732 people by the end of the decade. It is the largest city in South Carolina by population, with a population growth rate of 7.7%.


The city of Columbia has recently accomplished a number of urban redevelopment projects and has several more planned. The historic Congaree Vista, a 1,200-acre (5 km²) district running from the central business district toward theCongaree River, has been rehabilitated since its revitalization begun in the late 1980s. There are over 70 foreign affiliated companies and fourteen Fortune 500 companies in the region. Several companies have their global, continental, or national headquarters in Columbia, including Colonial Life & Accident Insurance Company, the second-largest supplemental insurance company in the nation, and AgFirst Farm Credit Bank, the largest bank headquartered in the state with over $30 billion in assets. The city's downtown revitalization efforts are being aimed at Main Street, which began seeing an exodus of department and specialty stores in the 1990s. The goal is to re-establish Main Street as a vibrant commercial and residential corridor, and the stretch of Main Street home to most businesses-from Gervais to Blanding streets-has been streetscaped in recent years. Not recently completed developments include an 18-story $60 million tower at the high-profile corner of Main and Gervaias streets, the new Main Street office building as the new headquarters for Wells Fargo Bank (formerly Wachovia Bank), a new sanctuary for the Holy Orthodox Church of the Holy Trinity, and a new Holy Trinity Orthodox Church in the location of the historic Efird General store in the historic Mast building.

Arts and culture

Town Theatre is the country's oldest community theatre in continuous use. The South Carolina State Museum is a comprehensive museum with exhibits in science, technology, history, and the arts. The Columbia City Jazz Dance Company, formed in 1990 by artistic director Dale Lam, was named one of the "Top 50 Dance Companies in the USA" by Dance Spirit magazine. The Palmetto Opera debuted in 2003 with a performance of "Love, Murder & Revenge," a mixture of scenes from famous operas. The Richland County Public Library, named the 2001 National Library of the Year, serves area citizens through its main library and nine branches. Busted Plug Plaza is the location of the world's largest fire hydrant, erected in 2001 by Columbia artist known as Blue Sky. The museum houses a diverse collection of artifacts from the South Carolina confederate period. It is located on the University of South Carolina campus and is the home for 25,000 filmgoers each year. In operation since 1979, "the Nick", run by the Columbia Film Society, is home to two film screenings each evening and an additional matinée three days a week. The Nickelodeon Theater is a 2 screen, store front theater located on Main Street between Taylor and Blanding Streets. It's the only non-profit art house film theater in South Carolina. It offers art, lectures, films, and guided tours. The Museum of Art features changing exhibits of art, science, regional history and folk art. It has been performing choral and circus shows since 1930.


The most popular sports in Columbia are the sports programs at the University of South Carolina. Columbia also offers minor league, semi-pro, and amateur sports. Williams-Brice Stadium is the home of the USC Gamecocks' football team and is the 24th largest college football stadium in the nation. The Colonial Life Arena, opened in 2002, is the largest arena in the state, serving as the home to the men's and women's USC GameCocks basketball teams. The Founders Park opened in 2009 and seats 8,400 permanently for college baseball and an additional 1,000 for standing room only. Segra Park, a $37 million stadium, is home for the Columbia Fireflies, a Minor League Baseball team playing in the Low-A East. It opened in April 2016 and can seat up to 7,501 people. Columbia has also hosted the women's U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in 1996 and 2000 and the 2007 Junior Wildwater World Championships, which featured many European canoe and kayak racers. In April 2017 the women’s Gamecock basketball team won the NCAA national championship, defeating Mississippi State 6755 to 6755. The stadium was built in 1934 with the help of federal Works Progress Administration funds, and initially seated 17,600. The original name was Carolina Stadium, but on September 9, 1972, it was renamed to honor the Williams and Brice families. Her late husband, Thomas H. Brice, played football for the university from 1922 to 1924.

Parks and recreation

Sidney Park was dedicated in 1859 as Sidney Park, named in honor of Algernon Sidney Johnson, a Columbia City Councilman. The park fell into disrepair after the Civil War and served as a site for commercial ventures until the late 20th century. Finlay Park has hosted events from festivals and political rallies to road races and Easter Sunrise services. Granby is a 24-acre (97,000 m2) linear park with canoe access points, fishing spots, bridges, and ½ mile of nature trail along the banks of the Congaree River. Riverbanks Zoo & Garden is a sanctuary for more than 2,000 animals housed in natural habitat exhibits along the Saluda River. This 22,200-acre park is home to champion trees, primeval forest landscapes, diverse plant and life life, and the world's largest animal park. The 1,419-acre S.C. State Park is a 1-419 km² (6 km²) lake featuring a 30-acre lake and some of the highest canopies in the world and the tallest trees in the eastern United States. It attracted over one million visitors in 2009 and is the No. 1 travel attraction in the Southeast. The city has plans for an $18 million upgrade of the park in the near future which will include a redesigned parking lot near Laurel Street; a significant overhaul of the pond; construction of a pair of scenic streams; brand new shelters, restrooms, plazas, and performance stage; new waterfall features.


The city of Columbia has a council-manager form of government. The mayor and city council are elected every four years, with no term limits. The current mayor is Daniel Rickenmann, who succeeded Stephen K. Benjamin on January 4, 2022. The city council consists of six members, four from districts and two elected at-large. The state of South Carolina's execution chamber is located at Broad River. The South Carolina Department of Corrections operates several correctional facilities in Columbia. They include the Broad River Correctional Institution, the Goodman Correctional Institution and the Camille Griffin Graham Correctional Institution. Graham houses the state's female death row. From 1990 to 1997, Broad River housed the state’s male death row, which is now located at the Campbell Pre-Release Center. The chief of police is W.H. "Skip" Holbrook; Holbrook was sworn in on April 11, 2014. The police force is the Columbia Police Department, which answers to the city manager. It is based in the city's downtown area and has a police force of about 2,000 officers. The department has a budget of about $1.5 million. It has a force of around 2,500 officers, which includes about 1,000 police officers. It also has a fire department, which has around 1,200 officers, and a sheriff's office, which serves as the town's emergency management agency. The town's mayor has the power to veto ordinances passed by the city council. vetoes can be overridden by a two-thirds majority of the council.


Columbia is home to the main campus of the University of South Carolina. It is also the site of several extension campuses, including those for Erskine Theological Seminary, South University, and University of Phoenix. Public school districts include Richland County School District One and Fort Jackson. Private schools include Columbia International University, ECPI University, South Carolina School of Leadership, and South Carolina Japanese Language Supplementary Sausu Karuhei Gakuen (Matsuba Gakuin) School is a weekend school for Japanese children, operating on the USC Campus in Columbia, with government funds held on the Columbia Campus in Matsuba, North Carolina. The city is also home to Allen University, which was founded in 1870 by the African Methodist Episcopal Church, and Benedict College, which is one of the fastest growing of the 39 U.S. Negro College Fund schools. It also has several community colleges, including Fortis College, Midlands Technical College, and Midlands Community and Technical College. The University of North Carolina at Columbia is a private, four-year, liberal arts college for women with a coeducational Evening College and Graduate School. The university has 350 degree programs and enrolls 31,964 students throughout fifteen degree-granting colleges and schools. Its main campus was chartered in 1801 as South Carolina College and in 1906 as the University Of South Carolina, and is located in downtown Columbia. It has had the No. 1 undergraduate international business degree for 20 consecutive years.

Air Quality, Water Quality, Superfund Sites & UV Index

The Air Quality index is in Columbia, Lexington County, South Carolina = 14.1. These Air Quality index is based on annual reports from the EPA. Higher values are better (100=best). The number of ozone alert days is used as an indicator of air quality, as are the amounts of seven pollutants including particulates, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, lead, and volatile organic chemicals. The Water Quality Index is 56. A measure of the quality of an area’s water supply as rated by the EPA. Higher values are better (100=best). The EPA has a complex method of measuring the watershed quality, using 15 indicators such as pollutants, turbidity, sediments, and toxic discharges. The Superfund Sites Index is 30. Higher is better (100=best). Based upon the number and impact of EPA Superfund pollution sites in the county, including spending on the cleanup efforts. The UV Index in Columbia = 4.9 and is a measure of an area's exposure to the sun's ultraviolet rays. This is most often a combination of sunny weather, altitude, and latitude. The UV Index has been defined by the WHO ( and is uniform worldwide.


The most recent city population of 136,632 individuals with a median age of 30.2 age the population grows by 5.66% in Columbia, Lexington County, South Carolina population since 2000 and are distributed over a density of 991.45 residents per square mile of area (382.80/km²). There are average 2.11 people per household in the 45,854 households with an average household income of $36,843 a year. The unemployment rate in Alabama is of the available work force and has dropped -2.52% over the most recent 12-month period and the projected change in job supply over the next decade based on migration patterns, economic growth, and other factors will increase by 18.86%. The number of physicians in Columbia per 100,000 population = 325.9.


The annual rainfall in Columbia = 45.1 inches and the annual snowfall = 1.2 inches. The annual number of days with measurable precipitation (over .01 inch) = 111. The average number of days per year that are predominantly sunny = 217. 92 degrees Fahrenheit is the average daily high temperature for the month of July and 37.1 degrees Fahrenheit is the average daily low temperature for the month of January. The Comfort Index (higher=better) is 30, where higher values mean a more pleasant climate. The Comfort Index measure recognizes that humidity by itself isn't the problem. (Have you noticed nobody ever complains about the weather being 'cold and humid?) It's in the summertime that we notice the humidity the most, when it's hot and muggy. Our Comfort Index uses a combination of afternoon summer temperature and humidity to closely predict the effect that the humidity will have on people.

Median Home Cost

The percentage of housing units in Columbia, Lexington County, South Carolina which are owned by the occupant = 41.46%. A housing unit is a house, apartment, mobile home, or room occupied as separate living quarters. The average age of homes = 40 years with median home cost = $145,530 and home appreciation of -3.39%. This is the value of the years most recent home sales data. Its important to note that this is not the average (or arithmetic mean). The median home price is the middle value when you arrange all the sales prices of homes from lowest to highest. This is a better indicator than the average, because the median is not changed as much by a few unusually high or low values. The property tax rate of $7.43 shown here is the rate per $1,000 of home value. If for simplification for example the tax rate is $14.00 and the home value is $250,000, the property tax would be $14.00 x ($250,000/1000), or $3500. This is the 'effective' tax rate.


The local school district spends $5,618 per student. There are 11.6 students for each teacher in the school, 574 students for each Librarian and 339 students for each Counselor. 6.01% of the area’s population over the age of 25 with an Associate Degree or other 2-year college degree, 21.72% with a master’s degree, Ph.D. or other advanced college degree and 14.75% with high school diplomas or high school equivalency degrees (GEDs).

  • Columbia's population in Richland County, South Carolina of 21,108 residents in 1900 has increased 6,47-fold to 136,632 residents after 120 years, according to the official 2020 census.

    Approximately 50.48% female residents and 49.52% male residents live in Columbia, Lexington County, South Carolina.

    As of 2020 in Columbia, Lexington County, South Carolina are married and the remaining 55.25% are single population.

  • 19.3 minutes is the average time that residents in Columbia require for a one-way commute to work. A long commute can have different effects on health. A Gallup poll in the US found that in terms of mental health, long haul commuters are up to 12 percent more likely to experience worry, and ten percent less likely to feel well rested. The Gallup poll also found that of people who commute 61­–90 minutes each day, a whopping one third complained of neck and back pain, compared to less than a quarter of people who only spend ten minutes getting to work.

    64.80% of the working population which commute to work alone in their car, 10.93% of the working population which commutes to work in a carpool, 3.99% of the population that commutes using mass transit, including bus, light rail, subway, and ferry. 2.74% of the population that has their home as their principal place of work.

  • Of the total residential buildings in Columbia, Lexington County, South Carolina, 41.46% are owner-occupied homes, another 47.76% are rented apartments, and the remaining 10.78% are vacant.

  • The 40.10% of the population in Columbia, Lexington County, South Carolina who identify themselves as belonging to a religion are distributed among the following most diverse religions.

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