Planning & Development
Build Up Darlington Program: The Build Up Darlington Citywide Business Loan Program under the umbrella of the Darlington Downtown Revitalization Association and the City of Darlington offers assistance to see local businesses thrive, to increase economic development, to build healthier businesses, to stabilize and expand existing businesses, and to bring people to the city to shop, live, and play. The program has three aspects: Training, Consulting, and Lending.Building Permit Information: Call 843-398-4000 Extension 105 or 106 for building permit information.
Commercial Appearance Code
Land Development Ordinance– Articles 1-2, Article 3-4, Article 5, and Article 6-7
Plat Review Checklist - Please make sure the City of Darlington is clearly referenced. Note building height, acreage, and square footage of buildings, as applicable. Plat review fee is $25.
Outdoor Lighting Regulation
On February 1, 2000, the Darlington City Council enacted specific outdoor lighting regulations. These regulations are designed to benefit residents and businesses in Darlington by constituting better nighttime visibility, public safety, energy efficiency, and
preservation of the natural night environment. See a sample of approved lighting here.
Approved Paint Colors
When painting or installing awnings and signage, the City of Darlington requires the color choice be approved prior to installation. Click here to download the approved color chart. Those colors with a check mark represent approved colors. Colors do not have to be any particular brand or name but must be visually similar to colors represented. Also, any paint colors from a historic line of paints would be accepted.
For sign approval, please submit drawings with scale, location, and colors noted along with this form.
South Carolina Business One Stop or SCBOS is the official South Carolina business web portal. It enables any existing business or anyone starting a new business to file state permits, licenses, registrations, or pay taxes.
Zoning InformationThe City of Darlington Ordinance can be found here.
Section 4-16 of the Zoning Ordinance was amended by City Council in 2014. Read the new section here.
State Programs for Business
In recent years, the South Carolina Department of Commerce has ramped up efforts to support the small business community, including the strengthening of international trade assistance programs. Last week, the State of South Carolina announced the expansion of its export initiative for in-state businesses through a new program: South Carolina Opportunities for Promoting Exports, or SCOPE.
SCOPE joins the State Trade and Export Promotion (STEP) program as a resource for small businesses looking to amplify their international trade efforts. In 2011, with a grant from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), S.C. Commerce implemented the STEP program. Since that time, 65 participating companies, with an average of 39 employees, have contributed nearly $4.7 million in export sales in South Carolina.
DDRA Improvement Incentive Program
Darlington Downtown Revitalization Association will provide up to 50% of the cost of removing or installing an approved sign up to a maximum of $1,000. Darlington Downtown Revitalization Association will provide up to 50% of the cost of exterior painting. For the 2015 grant cycle, Darlington Downtown Revitalization Association has $5,000 available for the program. Applications should be submitted by the 24th day of the month for consideration. Download this information and the application here.
What is encouraged
- Replacement of wall-mounted signage with projecting signage.
- Replacement of several advertising signs at one location with a single advertising sign.
- Signs designed by a sign professional.
- Replacement of worn, weathered, discolored, or out-dated signs and awnings.
- Repainting of exterior buildings which show paint chipping.
- Replacement or installation of awnings.
What will not be funded
- Purchase of portable or temporary signs.
- Signs that do not conform to the City’s sign regulations and which have not been approved.
- Signs and painting for businesses without current City of Darlington business licenses.
- Interior painting.
- Interior signage.
How to submit a request
- Consult with a sign professional to design the sign that you would like to install.
- If desired, consult with the City of Darlington Planning Department about whether your sign will meet regulations.
- Complete the Improvement Program application. Submit the forms to Darlington Downtown Revitalization Association Director Lisa Chalian-Rock in person at 410 Pearl St., Darlington, by email at [email protected], or by mail at P.O. Box 57, Darlington, SC 29540. If you lease the space where your business is located, you must include a letter from the building’s owner stating that he or she consents to the submission of the funding request, and, if funded, approves of the installation of the new sign or awning.
How applications will be scored
- The Board will review applications on a monthly basis until funds allocated for the program are exhausted.
- Preference will be given to DDRA members.
- Preference will be given to local, non-chain businesses.
Upon receiving your request, Darlington Downtown Revitalization Association will
- Confirm with City staff that the proposed signage and painting complies with City regulations and evaluate the application.
- Determine whether grant funding is available for the application.
- Darlington Downtown Revitalization Association may deny a sign grant or paint grant application that does not make recommended changes to their sign after initial review. Every effort will be made by the DDRA to work with the applicants so that an incentive can be granted.
- If your funding request is approved, you will be notified of such approval and asked to complete City of Darlington’s Sign/Awning Permit application. You must also receive approval from the City’s Codes Enforcement Office before work may begin.
Please remember that this grant program is a reimbursement program, which means that Darlington Downtown Revitalization Association will not disburse the grant payment to you until you provide proof that the sign company or paint company, as well as any other contractors working on the project, have been paid in full by you. All reimbursement checks will be paid to the applicant listed.