Florence is the largest city in and the county seat of Florence County, South Carolina, United States. Known as the Florence Metropolitan Statistical Area, Florence adjoins Darlington to form the core of "Pee Dee" region of South Carolina, an area that includes the eight counties of northeastern South Carolina along with sections in southeastern North Carolina. The U.S. Census Bureau estimated the city's population was 31,570 at the 2000 census (90,128 total pop. of Florence Urbanized Area). This 1997 All-America City finalist, was founded as a railroad hub city of Florence became the junction of three major railroad systems; the Wilmington and Manchester, The Northeastern, and the Cheraw and Darlington. Florence would quickly grow as a planned city. Today, the city retains its status as a major hub, both for industry and infrastructure. In modern times, the city has taken on additional dimension as a center for business culture and finance, with its rich historic homes domanting medical center towers,and progressive educational institutions come together to form a destination for the northeastern portion of South Carolina.