The Islamic Center of Columbia (ICC) was founded in 1981 by a group of local Muslims who had been meeting in private residences to hold prayers and classes in Islam. There was already a mosque in Columbia at this time that was affiliated with the Nation of Islam, but the founders of the ICC felt the teachings of that mosque deviated from the original, historical Islam they practiced.
The group purchased on old office building on Gervais Street in downtown Columbia, near the University of South Carolina, and met in the converted office building for nearly 10 years before they were able to raise money to build a new mosque building. According to Omar Khalidi, the new building was constructed from 1990-1992 by the local architect William Bailey Kauric.
The two-story building is a five-sided polygon in plan, with a brown brick and white concrete exterior in vertical stripes. A band runs around the top of the mosque with a design reminiscent of Arabic arches. The main entrance is on the right side of the building, and the women's entrance is to the left. Inside the main entrance is a foyer that leads to the prayer hall. The women's entrance leads to a hallway with several classrooms and a library, and a hallway to the prayer hall. The upper level of the Center houses school facilities, including a large meeting room/cafeteria and several classrooms.