Columbia, SC


The church in Columbia (Download Report as PDF)

The Church in Columbia was established in 1987 after a group of saints migrated to the area in the mid 1980’s joining some local saints. The church has met in the homes and in a small business of the saints for many years. Recently the church has obtained a meeting hall that can seat approximately 100 saints and can care for the children and is suitable for larger gatherings. It also has a great number of parking spaces. About 22 saints currently gather on the Lord’s Day mornings, including about 6 children. Saints also meet in small groups in the homes for prayer and vital group meetings. The racial composition of the church is about 50% white and 50% a mix of Asian, Black, and Hispanic.

For many years, there has been a burden for the main campus here, the University of South Carolina, but there has never been a club or campus team. The burden for the campus is stronger thanks to the Lord for the migration of saints here and the purchase of a house close to the campus. We also have a brother who is a faculty member in the University of South Carolina School of Medicine.


Location

Columbia is located in the midlands of South Carolina surrounded by the Congaree River on the south and the Saluda and Broad Rivers on the north and east. It also is home to Lake Murray a man-made lake that is a gigantic attraction to fisherman and boaters alike. To the east is the Atlantic Ocean and to the northwest are the Blue Ridge Mountains. Driving times to several localities in the region are: Simpsonville, SC—1:40; Augusta, GA—1:30; Charlotte, NC—1:45; Chapel Hill, NC—3:45; Raleigh, NC—3:20; Atlanta, GA—3:30; Athens, GA—3:00; Chattanooga, TN—5:40; Knoxville, TN—4:30.

Climate

Columbia has four distinct, but mild seasons: springs are mild, with highs in the 70s and 80s an abundance of blossoming hardwood trees; winters are crisp, with a few overnight freezes and daytime highs in the 50s, and occasionally one or two days of light sleet or snow per year; summers are humid with highs averaging in the high 80s to mid 90’s; falls are the most beautiful of the seasons, with highs averaging in the 70s and a great deal of pleasant outdoor color. Average annual rainfall is about 46 inches, but Columbia is also a sunny city in all four seasons with 60% average daily sunshine.

Health

Columbia has two major health care systems, Palmetto Health and Prisma Health in Columbia, Charleston, and Greenville, SC. Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) in Charleston, is one of the top hospitals in the Southeast US, providing top medical care and specialized care. Columbia is also home to the William Jennings Bryan Dorn VA hospital.

Demographics

Columbia, the capital of South Carolina, has a population of 133,451 people, and the metro area has 767,598. Columbia is the second most populous city in South Carolina behind only Charleston and has had a steady growth rate of 1.2% yearly. The racial makeup of the Columbia metro area is 48.1% White, 39.2% Black, 6.3% Hispanic, 3.8% Asian, and 2.6% mixed or other.

Transportation

Columbia Metropolitan Airport is a small but busy metro airport travelling to most major hubs with reasonable fares for the size. Flights from top airlines such as American Airlines, Delta, and United are most common.

Columbia has a bus system (COMET) that travels throughout Richland county and has a bus system through the University to all major campus buildings and parking structures.

Columbia also has a Greyhound bus station and Amtrak train that can transport long distances. The major highways to get around Columbia form a beltway around the city and exit to the major cities of Charleston, Greenville, Charlotte, Augusta, and Atlanta. The three interstate highways in Columbia are the I-77, I-20, and I-26.

Economy

A Forbes report named Columbia one of the top 100 places to start a career or do business and is also ranked in the top 100 as far as job growth. Columbia thrives in government, military, law, banking, and education jobs.

The following are some of the top companies to work for in Columbia:

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While the jobs outlook in Columbia is very positive, the cost of living remains very reasonable. The income tax rate in South Carolina is variable to 7%. In Richland and Lexington Counties the sales tax is 8% and the property tax rate is 0.59% which is one of the lowest rates in the US.

Interests

Listed below is a variety of special places to visit in Columbia and surrounding areas.

Science and nature: Edventure, SCeTV, ITology, McKissock Nature Museum, Congaree National Park, Saluda Shoals Park, Sesquicentennial Park, Lake Murray, South Carolina State Museum, Nature Conservancy, Harbison National Forest Arts and culture: Workshop Theatre, Columbia Museum of Art, Koger Center, Colonial Life Arena, Arts Festival, South Carolina State Fair Professional sports: Columbia Fireflies and Lexington Blowfish (minor league baseball) South Carolina attractions and vacation destinations: Myrtle Beach, Blue Ridge Mountains, Charleston, Riverbanks Zoo, Lake Murray, Lake Marion, Edisto Beach, Hunting Island, Hilton Head Island, Carowinds, Many State Parks, State Capital and Governor’s Mansion, Isle of Palms

Christians

Columbia is a city in the Bible belt and has an overwhelming 78% who profess to be Christian. There are many old historic churches especially in Charleston.

Campuses

Columbia’s major university is the University of South Carolina with over 29,599 in undergrad enrollment. There is also the USC School of Medicine which is the top medical university in Columbia.

Midlands Technical College has approximately 15,000 in student enrollment

Columbia College is a small, Methodist College with an enrollment of 1,500 students

Other colleges and Universities in Columbia include: Allen University, Benedict College, Columbia International University, Lutheran Theological Seminary, WL Bonner College, South University, ECPI University, and University of Phoenix

Schools

Public Schools: The major school districts in Columbia are Richland and Lexington Schools. School quality varies throughout the area and there are numerous magnet, charter, lottery, and IB programs to choose from.

County Private schools: Columbia has a number of quality private schools most of which are Christian schools. Heathwood Hall, Hammond, and Ben Lippen are top private schools in Columbia.

Homeschooling: Homeschooling is legal in South Carolina and many Christian families pursue this option as best for them in the educating of their children. Usually this is done in coordination with local school districts.

Housing

Columbia offers a variety of housing types and options. Columbia has newer houses being built in many of the suburban areas of Irmo, Lexington, Chapin, and in Northeast Columbia.

There is also historic Columbia which is popular but expensive in the capital and University area of Columbia.

The chart below has a list of some areas of interest in housing in the Columbia Metro Area.

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