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South Carolina Population Data

Tue, 05/31/2022

South Carolina Population Data

How Regional Populations Affect Local Workforces

Columbia, SC – The S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce (DEW) is a state agency responsible for data collection and analysis, and DEW prides itself in sharing data that can provide the public with insight as to the strengths of South Carolina’s local workforce development areas, as well as outlooks on both statewide and regional economic trends. The U.S. Census Bureau recently released its 2021 population estimates by municipality. Previously, they reported that South Carolina had a recorded total population on July 1, 2021, of 5,190,705 residents, which is a 1.4 percent increase from the 2020 Census figure of 5,118,425.

“While the ranking of the largest municipalities in South Carolina remains unchanged, there are interesting changes occurring in both our biggest cities and smallest towns,” states Executive Director Dan Ellzey. “Twenty-six out of 46 counties saw population increases in 2021, yet our most rural areas, particularly those in the southern and eastern parts of the state, saw gradual losses in their local populations, and many of the remaining residents consist of older adults who have retired out of the labor force.”

 “One interesting case of population growth is Hardeeville,” said Dr. Bryan Grady, Labor Market Information Director. “That city increased its population by one seventh in a single year and is the fasted growing municipality in the state based on percentage. Hardeeville benefits from its proximity to both Hilton Head Island and Savannah, Georgia, making it a highly convenient location in which to both live and work. Census Bureau data and projections made by the S.C. Revenue and Fiscal Affairs Office reveal that Hardeeville and Jasper County will most likely have continued growth in its workforce, and possibly become a far larger piece of the state’s total population and economy in the upcoming years.”

For more information regarding population data and how it affects the local workforce areas, interested parties can review the breakdown sheet below and contact with any press inquiries or interview requests for the Labor Market Information Division.


2021 South Carolina Population Data Breakdown

Sourced from the U.S. Census Bureau’s City and Town Population Totals for 2020-2021


The ten largest municipalities:


Total Residents

  1. Charleston


  1. Columbia


  1. North Charleston


  1. Mount Pleasant


  1. Rock Hill


  1. Greenville


  1. Summerville


  1. Goose Creek


  1. Sumter


  1. Florence



The fastest growing municipalities based on population count:


Net New Residents

  1. Bluffton


  1. Greer


  1. Fort Mill


  1. North Charleston


  1. Mount Pleasant


  1. Greenville


  1. Simpsonville


  1. Hardeeville


  1. Myrtle Beach


  1. Mauldin



The municipalities with the largest declines based on population count:


Net New Residents

  1. Sumter


  1. Orangeburg


  1. Gaffney


  1. Spartanburg


  1. Marion


  1. Union


  1. Greenwood


  1. Dillon


  1. Hampton


  1. Bennettsville



The fastest growing municipalities (1,000+ residents) based on percentage:


 Net Population Increase

  1. Hardeeville


  1. Bluffton


  1. Fort Mill


  1. Blythewood


  1. Greer


  1. Fountain Inn


  1. Simpsonville


  1. Loris


  1. Kershaw


  1. Hanahan



The municipalities with the largest declines (1,000+ residents) based on percentage:


Net Population Increase

  1. Hampton


  1. Allendale


  1. Varnville


  1. Estill


  1. Fairfax


  1. Kingstree


  1. Bishopville


  1. St. George


  1. Holly Hill


  1. Saluda