Columbia SC could have a public beach and resort


Rendering of a potential public access lagoon planned for Columbia by Miami-based Crystal Lagoons.

crystal lagoons

Two hours at the beach, two hours in the mountains may soon no longer be an accurate descriptor for Columbia. Next year, private developers hope to bring a beach to the capital.

A lagoon complex backed by a private equity group is planned somewhere in Colombia. An exact location is undisclosed, but it will be near a residential development, according to the minds behind the development.

Miami-based Crystal Lagoons is partnering with Greenville-based investment firm Broadstreet Inc. to build the man-made resort and public-access lagoon. The pair announced the partnership in a press release.

“Imagine living near a beautiful, crystal-clear lagoon surrounded by white-sand beaches without having to drive to the beach,” Broadstreet, Inc. CEO David Feingold said in a statement. “We are excited to bring this innovative equipment to South Carolina.”

The company could build up to three lagoon projects in South Carolina, according to the release.

It’s unclear how big the Columbia Lagoon would be or what attractions it might include. Water sports, restaurants, retail and concerts are among the possibilities, according to the company’s website.

“Many other similar projects in the United States offer more than sunbathing and swimming, with the possibility of shopping, entertainment, restaurants and hotels around the lagoon,” the statement added.

As for size, other projects in the United States have varied widely. A Wesley Chapel, Florida, project clocks at 7.5 acres, while a project in the Coachella Valley is being built on 618 acres.

The company claims to have active projects across the globe, from Argentina to Romania to Chicago. Florida, Texas and Arizona are also among the states where the lagoon concept seems to be taking off.

Crystal Lagoons markets itself as an eco-friendly company, writing on its website, “by having an idyllic beach near you, you won’t need to take a plane or travel by car to a beach away, thus reducing the carbon footprint”.

It also promises to use “up to 100 times” fewer chemicals and consume 2% of the energy required by conventional pools.

Crystal Lagoons would like to begin building the Columbia Resort in early 2023, according to the release.

Morgan Hughes covers Columbia news for The State. She previously reported on health, education and local government in Wyoming and won awards in Wyoming and Wisconsin for feature writing and investigative journalism. Morgan is new to the South but has fun learning about the quirks and culture of South Carolina.

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