City Desk

SoMo Rebranding “Stupid,” Says Adams Morgan BID Director

The Adams Morgan Main Street-backed rebranding of southern Adams Morgan as "SoMo" is entering its second month, and at least two people aren't fans: Adams Morgan BID Executive Director Kristen Barden and George Washington University real estate professor Christopher P. Leinberger. While they clashed on Adams Morgan's potential earlier this week, they agree on at least one thing: SoMo is a bad idea.

"I think it's stupid, to be honest," says Barden. "I would never have done that."

According to Leinberger, Adams Morgan is too small to start subdividing into micro-neighborhoods like SoMo. "Cutting it in half, you just don't have the critical mass," he says.

Adams Morgan Main Street didn't respond to a request for comment.

Photo by Elvert Barnes used under a Creative Commons license.

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  • Matt Cohen


  • ThomThom

    These deals are all frauds but nothing beats the "mid-city arts district" bannering fandango a few years back. The two broads who engineered the whole things walked with 150K+, skimmed off the top of the grant cash for "consulting". The banners, both ugly and pathetically small and are hardly noticeable much less any kind of successful branding. Worse, the damage done to existing growing entities has yet to be undone.

    Adams Morgan might be better served by a good, regular steam cleaning a la The French Quarter in NOLA.

  • Widness


  • j

    this BID lady is a spitfire - love that she says her opinion and doesnt care what people think

  • AM Next

    Will -

    Who did you attempt to contact at Adams Morgan Main Street? Lisa Duperier had been removed as the president prior to this and she did not have the approval of the board of directors to initiate this ridiculous campaign.

    Have you spoken to the business owners to get their opinion? Were they involved in planning and implementation? No!

    This was not about the businesses. It was merely a political stunt so that Mayor Gray would have yet another "positive" daily press event. He needs these events to nurture an image of normalcy after the revelations of his election fraud. Lisa Duperier has used Main Street to do political favors for years.

  • kob

    By bifurcating Adams Morgan into separate commercial areas, Adams Morgan Main Street is dividing its attention. This Balkanization creates two distinct interest groups.

    What Admo Main Street needs to do is explain how this rebranding helps all of Adams Morgan.

  • Kalorama

    Let's not stop with "SoMo". Let's subdivide into "SoSoMo", "MidSoMo", "NoSoMo", and "SoNoMo", "MidNoMo", "NoNoMo" (which stands for no no more). Once the AM Hotel is done, we will be faced with East NoNoMo.

  • Pingback: Christopher Leinberger | At the Center of It All | The George Washington University School of Business

  • David Gaines

    I would like to know what the business owners of "SoMo" (and "NoMo?") think about this branding. And the residents and really all of DC. It would be one thing if this was to create a neighborhood, a destination (i.e. NoMa) but Adams Morgan?