SoCo… That Is All

The gentrification train keeps roaring its way up to Harlem and Morningside Heights, or should we say "SoCo."

Today Curbed posted two items that spell trouble or progress, depending on your point of view. W Hotel’s parent company Starwood is building a branch of its new Aloft brand on Frederick Douglass Bpulevard and 124th Street. Aloft Harlem is slated to open in June 2010 next to an old carriage house that perhaps not coincidentally was long-rumored to be the site of a W hotel before it was recently converted to lofts.

And if the 125th Street rezoning, a luxury boutique hotel chain, and Columbia’s expansion were not enough to seal upper Manhattan’s fate, brokers have coined a pretentiously trendy name to attract young people to the nabe: "SoCo."

"South of Columbia University is Hot. SOCO," reads a listing for a $349,000 studio on 103rd and Riverside Drive on Halstead Property’s Web site.

We did not think anything could be worse than the SoHa moniker condo developers are pushing on Harlem, but maybe college students will be more receptive to the rebranding campaign for Morningside Heights.