Garment District accelerates efforts to rebrand

December 12, 2012 10:30AM

The Garment District is stepping up its efforts to rebrand — and possibly rename — the neighborhood, the Wall Street Journal reported. The neighborhood’s business improvement district, known as the Fashion Center Business Improvement District, has hired the Brand Union, a branding agency, to help rethink and potentially remake its image. The BID is considering both a new name and a new symbol for the area.

“Does the notion of the neighborhood reflect the current experience, with new hotels, commercial occupants? Even the ground-floor retail has changed a lot,” Barbara Randall, president of the BID, which includes the rough area from 35th to 41st streets between Fifth and Ninth avenues.

In November, talk circulated about renaming the neighborhood rebranding itself as “Chelsea North,

“It’s crazy for us to have this location in New York and have its symbol be the button, the thimble and the needle,” Tony Malkin, one of the area’s largest landlords.

Currently zoning laws that preserve millions of square feet of space for production has thwarted the hyper-gentrification seen in other neighborhoods. But with a trendier brand and high demand, experts told the Journal that rents are bound to rise eventually. [WSJ]Christopher Cameron