World’s Largest Fire Hydrant in Columbia, S.C.
Towering on Taylor Street in downtown Columbia is an iconic and unconventional sculpture — a 40-foot fire hydrant that has been billed as the largest in the world.
Busted Plug Plaza, a creation by South Carolina artist Blue Sky, is a 40-foot tall, 675,000-pound sculpture that was unveiled in 2001. The massive artwork sits askew to appear as though a car once struck the hydrant, almost knocking it over. At one time, Busted Plug was an actual fountain, shooting water out to complete the look.
The sculpture was commissioned by Farm Credit Bank in 1999. Exactly what Sky was creating while the hydrant was being built was kept a secret to the public and culminated in unveiling to the theme of the film “2001: A Space Odyssey.” Busted Plug was later donated to the City of Columbia when the land was sold to apartment developers in 2014.
Sky intended Busted Plug to be an accompaniment to one of his most famous creations in Columbia, the mural Tunnelvision. Located on the side of a building across the street from the hydrant, Tunnelvision features a realistic painting of a car driving through a tunnel into the sunset and is widely considered to be Sky’s most famous work.
Today, tourists and residents alike stop to admire the hydrant and Tunnelvision as core pieces of the Columbia art scene.
Sky (formerly Warren Edward Johnson) is a Columbia native and known for his public art throughout South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Florida, and Michigan. In Columbia alone, his work can also be found at S.C. State Museum, Harper’s Restaurant, Satchel Ford Elementary, Crayton Middle School, the University of South Carolina Visitors Center and Congaree National Park, among others.
Driving Directions to Our Offices
From the fire hydrant, head east on Taylor Street toward Bull Street.
After 1 mile, continue onto Forest Drive.
Turn right onto Trenholm Road in 3 miles.
In 0.3 miles, make a left on Calendar Court. Our offices will be on the left.
Visit us or contact our office today!
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