Charleston has become South Carolina’s largest city by population, according to the latest U.S. Census Bureau estimates, beating out the state’s capitol city.
The Post and Courier reports that census estimates Charleston had a population of 134,385 in July 2016, which was just 76 more residents than Columbia. Charleston has been experiencing much faster growth than its sister city to the northwest. The Census data indicates the Holy City grew by more than 14,000 residents since the 2010 Census, while Columbia increased roughly 5,000 residents in the same span.
Columbia’s metropolitan area (which includes Lexington, Irmo and other communities) remains larger than Charleston, according to the data.
North Charleston remains the state’s third-largest city with 109,298 residents. Mount Pleasant ranked fourth with a population of 84,170.
Meanwhile, the Census statistics also show Greenville was the nation’s fastest-growing city east of Texas from July 2015-July 2016. Greenville is South Carolina’s sixth-largest city with a population of 67,453. However, the statistic can be misleading, since Greenville is a relatively small city based on land area, despite being a part of the state’s largest metropolitan area (when combined with Spartanburg and Anderson).
Last year Mount Pleasant was the fastest-growing city east of the Mississippi and ninth fastest-growing in the nation at the time. But it did not make the list this time around. Year over year percentage growth rates can change significantly depending on the population of the municipality.