Who are we?

The South Carolina Chapter of the American Institute of Architects is an association dedicated to providing its members with opportunities to gain knowledge through continuing education, advocate together with one voice for the public’s Health, Safety and Welfare, and become more involved in communities where better places for people can be created.

AIA South Carolina (AIA/SC) is a Chapter and statewide component of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) with over 900 members throughout our state.

South Carolina has six sections located conveniently across our state for our members to get involved in at the local level. Our sections include:

Our History

The nearly 100 year history of AIA South Carolina has been documented in two published books. Architecture Practice in South Carolina, 1913-1963 and Architectural Practice: The South Carolina Chapter of the American Institute of Architects. These publications recount the development of the architectural profession in South Carolina. AIA/SC will celebrate its 100th anniversary in 2013

Born out of the a group of dedicated individuals, Harlan E. McClure, FAIA, Dean Emeritus of the College of Architecture, Arts and Humanities stated, “The South Carolina Chapter of the American Institute of Architects is unique, for it has worked as a group to improve the professional standards of architecture.  It played an important role as the School of Architecture became an independent college within the framework of Clemson University and collaborated in the fund raising and establishment of off-campus programs in South Carolina and Europe.”

In his book, Architectural Practice:  The South Carolina Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, John M. Bryan, HAIA states, “…….the growth of the state over the last half-century has been paralleled by the growth of the architectural profession.  Membership in the AIA/SC has grown from six charter members in June 1913, to 790 (out of 973 licensed architects residing in South Carolina and 2251 out-of-state registrants) in June 2001.”  Today, AIA/SC boasts over 900 members statewide.

In January 2015, AIA South Carolina moved to the ground floor space of 1530 Main Street, originally known as the Canal Dime Savings Bank, in Columbia’s newest historic district.  Prior to moving to Main Street, AIASC was located in the Robert Mills Historic District at 1522 Richland Street, fondly known as The Cottage, which was purchased in 1979 and served as the chapter’s headquarters for over 35 years.

AIA South Carolina’s Mission

*The AIA is the voice of the architectural profession and a resource for its members in service to society.”

The objects of AIA/SC shall be to promote and forward the objects of the American Institute of Architects within the assigned territory of this Chapter.  (The Institute objects are: to organize and unite in fellowship the member of the architectural profession; to promote the aesthetic, scientific and practical efficiency of the profession; to advance the science and art of planning and building by advancing the standards of architectural education, training and practice; to coordinate the building industry and the profession of architecture to ensure the advancement of the living standards of people through their improved environment; and to make the profession of ever-increasing service to society.)

*AIA National’s Mission Statement



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