Aiken, SC

Today, the City of Aiken, South Carolina is a beautiful, historic and charming city which attracts visitors from across the United States and all over the world. Its unique location, soil and weather also attract equestrians and equestrian enthusiasts. However, Aiken was not born a charming city. It took years of planning, investment and devotion to get to the point where it is today, with most of the progress having occurred within the past several decades. During these decades, numerous businesses have been located in Aiken and many individuals have come to call Aiken home. The founders and the members of the Aiken Corporation and the Aiken Downtown Development Association were instrumental in initiating changes and organizing partnerships to create programs that boosted the local economy.



During the 1970s and 1980s, Aiken was a quiet, underdeveloped town with very few attractions. The downtown area and the City as a whole were growing at a slow pace and without any impressive economic stimulus. There were only a few businesses downtown and some in the City as a whole. With the exception of the Savannah River Site and the University of South Carolina Aiken, there were no big employers in the town. As a result, during the 1980s, there was a widespread recognition of a need to enhance economic growth and quality of life in the City of Aiken.