preservation month 2019

Thank you for celebrating National Historic Preservation Month with the City of Columbia!  We want to send out a thank you to everyone who participated in our 2019 Preservation Month events and helped to make each event great!  We would love your feedback! Please take a moment to participate in our survey.

We also want to send out a big THANK YOU to everyone who supported our 2019 Preservation Month events! 

  • Columbia Art Center
  • Columbia Design League
  • Columbia Museum of Art
  • Columbia Visitor's Center & Visitor Services Staff
  • Todd Avant and the Vista Guild


Vista Architectural Scavenger Hunt

Congratulations to our scavenger hunt winners!

  • Emily I. - Blue Marlin Gift Box
  • Evan S. - River Runner Outdoor Center Gift Certificate
  • Jeanie B. - Motor Supply Company Bistro Gift Certificate
  • Rosalee H. - Hyatt Place Complimentary One Night Stay


Mable Payne Award 2019

Congratulations Bob Guild & Joe Wider!

Each year, the City of Columbia Planning Division gives the Mable Payne Award to an individual or group that has played a vital role in preserving the City’s architectural heritage. This year, we happily presented the Mable Payne Award to Bob Guild and Joe Wider- long time leaders of the Granby Mill Village Neighborhood. For the past few decades, Bob and Joe have worked as residents of Granby to ensure the protection of the unique historic character of their neighborhood. To name a few achievements: they have been involved in saving mill buildings from demolition and promoting adaptive reuse, listing the Granby Mill Village in the National Register, designating Granby as a local Architectural Conservation District, and protecting the Congaree River front through the creation of Granby Park and the start of the Three Rivers Greenway. Through all of their efforts Bob and Joe have worked not only to protect the historic fabric of the mill neighborhood but also to recognize and celebrate the lasting legacy of the cotton mill workers who were integral to shaping the City we know today.

Thank you, Bob and Joe, for all that you do!


Historic Preservation

Photo of exterior building renovation along Main Street in downtown ColumbiaThe City of Columbia Planning Department is responsible for historic preservation activities within the City.  The Historic Preservation Division of the Department is responsible for the administration of the City's historic preservation ordinance, which provides certain kinds of legal protection for buildings, districts, and sites that have been declared historic by City Council.  The City of Columbia has over 180 individual landmarks.

The Division is also response for developing awareness of Columbia's rich historical beginnings, which started in 1786 when Columbia became the first planned capital in the new nation.  Additionally, the Division raises awareness of how historic materials can be preserved through workshops and educational events.

The Historic Preservation Division is in charge of approving Certificates of Design Approval (CDAs) for alterations to historic buildings and sites.  The design review process for Columbia's historic districts and design districts is administered by the Design/Development Review Commission (D/DRC) and the design review staff.  All projects come directly to staff for consultation first.  Staff may then direct the applicant as to whether the project can be approved at the staff level, or must be channeled through the Commission according to City Ordinance.

If you have questions, please contact the staff representative for your district.  


Preservation Newsletter

If you would like to sign up to receive the preservation newsletter, please email [email protected].  Past newsletters are available below.