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NWSFO COLUMBIA, SC
Station Location: The Weather Forecast Office (WFO), Columbia, SC, is located in a separate building, 800 feet east of the terminal building, Columbia Metropolitan Airport. The address is 2909 Aviation Way, West Columbia, SC 29170-2102. There is access to the office from Interstate 26 and SC Highway 302. Parking is available at the WFO. Telephone numbers: 803-822-8135 (listed), and 803-765-5501 (administration).
Station Activity: Columbia WFO is a 24-hour operational forecast office with the following functions: aviation, synoptic, hydrologic, and climatological observations with a commissioned ASOS; WSR-88D radar; GOES satellite surveillance; NOAA Weather Radio with 24-hour broadcasts for several transmitting stations in South Carolina and east central Georgia. The responsibility for short term warnings includes 18 counties in central SC and 5 counties in east central GA. The WFO prepares public, aviation, and fire weather forecasts for SC as well as public and aviation forecasts for east central GA. The office has warning and/or watch responsibility for severe weather, flood, and winter storm events in SC and east central GA.
Columbia is the state headquarters for the SC Emergency Management Division, the State Law Enforcement Division, and numerous private and government offices, all of which require weather service. The WFO is the NWS State Liaison Office in SC, serving as the primary NWS contact point for dealing with the state department heads and elected government officials.
Transient and Permanent Living Accommodations: Hotels are available a few miles from the WFO. Rates range from $50.00 and up for a single room. Housing is available in a number of desirable subdivisions at $90,000 and up. House and apartment rentals start at $500 per month (for 1 bedroom apartment).
Eating Facilities: There are numerous restaurants within 1 to 5 miles of the WFO.
Community Description: Columbia, SC (population 566,000, Richland and Lexington Counties) is located in the center of South Carolina. It is the state’s capital and a cultural center. Columbia has an array of facilities attracting many activities. A few are the Carolina Coliseum, the Colonial Center, The Township Auditorium, and the Koger Center for the Arts. Columbia takes pride in the Riverbanks Zoo and Botanical Garden which is a premier family choice for education and recreation in the southeast. Other points of interest are the SC State Museum, the EdVenture Children’s Museum, the Columbia Museum of Art, the Columbia Riverfront Park and Historic Canal, the Congaree National Park, and the historic State House.
Colleges and universities include the University of South Carolina, Benedict College, Midlands Technical College, Columbia College and several religious-sponsored colleges. There are modern shopping centers in many parts of the metropolitan area. Columbia is also home to the Moncrief Army Community Hospital at Fort Jackson and the Veterans Affairs Medical Center, as well as several other well known hospitals.
Columbia is located near the confluence of the Broad and Saluda Rivers, which form the Congaree River. Lake Murray, Sesquicentennial State Park, and numerous private facilities offer a wide range of recreational opportunities. In addition, Columbia has a 2-hour interstate access to either seacoast or mountains. The Columbia Metropolitan Airport is the major airport here.
Local Transportation: Local transportation consists of limousine service between Columbia Metropolitan Airport and downtown Columbia, bus and taxi service. Bus schedules are hourly during the busiest part of the day, but irregular at other hours. A car is a necessity for an employee who works rotating shifts.
Tax Information: There is a 6% South Carolina sales tax on all items purchased, personal property tax, and a state income tax.
Child Care Facilities: There are numerous child care facilities in and around Columbia.
Climate: The climate in the Columbia area is relatively temperate, temperatures averaging approximately 64 degrees annually, ranging from the minimum of 34 degrees in the winter to 70 degrees in the summer. Daily high temperatures range from about 57 degrees in the winter to 92 degrees in the summer. Annual rainfall averages approximately 46 inches with precipitation distributed rather uniformly throughout the year.