Hurricane Joaquin caused record flooding in the Midlands and statewide. The AIAGC section is coordinating with local officials, contractors, building materials suppliers, and non-profit organizations to bring relief to those in the area who need help to build back what they lost.

Flood Damaged Property – Important Updates
City of Columbia residents can find out more about the City’s floodplain permitting policy below. To determine if you are eligible to receive disaster assistance, please go to:

Flood Repair Permitting Stations
• 1st Floor, 1136 Washington St., Columbia, SC 29201
• Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m., – 5 p.m.,
• Free 2 hr. parking available in Washington Square Garage on levels 2A and 2B
• Services Offered: Information about process. Property information look-up.
Permit applications accepted here.

Flood Damaged Property – Building Permit Information
There are very important facts to be aware of before moving forward with any repairs to a flood-damaged home located in the floodplain. Taking steps without accurate information can cost time and money. Please see details below.
Anyone making repairs to a flood-damaged structure in the City of Columbia needs to get a zoning and building permit from the Development Center. If using the service of a contractor, they must be licensed by the South Carolina Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation. More information about the permitting process can be found online or by calling (803) 545-3483. For more information on the Floodplain Development Permitting process, please visit
Floodplain Management Contacts
Flood Plain Management questions:
Ali Khan (803) 545-3400
Building Code questions:
Jerry Thompson (80) 545-3442
Building Permit questions:
Development Center (803) 545-3483
Planning questions:
Krista Hampton

Do I have the green light to get a building permit for my flood-damaged property?
Green light: If your property is not located within the 100-year floodplain or is constructed at least two (2) feet above the base flood elevation, you will be issued a building permit for repairs that meet other applicable code standards (such as building and zoning).
Yellow light: If your property is located within the 100-year floodplain, before a building permit can be issued, it must first be determined through the completion of a Flood Hazard Permit Application:
• The elevation of the first floor of the property through submittal of an elevation certificate. (The City’s Floodplain Manager may have one on file).
• If the structure sustained substantial damage or will require substantial improvements to make it habitable.
Red light: If your property is located within the floodplain and sustained substantial damage or will require substantial improvements to make it habitable, the structure will have to come into compliance with the City of Columbia’s Flood Damage Prevention Ordinance. This means that the first floor of the building must be constructed at a height of two (2) feet above the base flood elevation. Please discuss how this affects your property specifically a City flood management representative.
What is substantial damage?
Substantial damage means damage of any origin sustained by a structure where the cost of restoring the structure to its before damaged condition would equal or exceed 50 percent of the market value of the structure before the damage occurred. (Note: the cost of repairs must include all costs necessary to fully repair the structure to its pre-damaged condition.)
What are substantial improvements?
Substantial Improvement means improvements of any origin where the cost of improving the structure would equal or exceed 50 percent of the market value of the structure before the improvements are made. (Note: the cost of improvements must include all costs necessary to fully improve the structure.)
What is an elevation certificate?
The elevation certificate is one way for a community to comply with the National Flood Insurance Program requirement that the community obtain the elevation of the lowest floor (including basement) of all new and substantially improved structures and maintain a record of such information. Elevation Certificates must be prepared and certified by a Licensed Land Surveyor, Registered Professional Engineer or Registered Architect who is authorized by state or local law to certify elevation information.