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Curbed Cup Elite Eight: (3) SoMa vs. (6) Bernal Heights

Half the field has already been eliminated in the Curbed Cup, our annual award to the San Francisco neighborhood of the year. This week we'll have two matchups apiece on Monday and Tuesday—with the polls left open for 24 hours—and by Wednesday only four contenders will be left vying for the prestigious fake trophy. Let the eliminations continue!

Just about everything happening to San Francisco is also happening to SoMa, and consequently it's a barometer of change in the city—and a point of contention as tech companies continue to dominate in the "Cloud Corridor" and the Design District holds steady against the pressure of change (for now) and the Flower Mart tries its best. Forest City's ambitious 5M project is poised to remake the blocks around the Chronicle Building (and add a stunning roof garden to the top of the building). Median rents in SoMa have been ticking up—Zumper's latest count has the median for a one-bedroom standing at $3,500—as has the district's micro-unit count. SoMa still feels gritty, but it's getting fancier by the day. However, you should under no circumstances leave your bike at Ninth and Harrison.

Nestled around that big, remote brown hill on the southern side of the city is Bernal Heights. Or at least it used to seem remote. As the southern side of the city has boomed over the past few years, Bernal Heights went from feeling like the city's best-kept secret to being at the epicenter of change. Houses sell for way over asking and Airbnb landlords seek to cash in on even the crappiest of apartments. Bernal was even named the hottest neighborhood in the United States by real estate website Redfin earlier this year. Despite all the fuss, Bernal hasn't lost its small-town feel. Strolling down Cortland Avenue, with its mix of cafés and local shops, feels more like being in a village—or maybe just the 90s?—than somewhere in the big city. That atmosphere is probably one of the reasons that Bernal is so beloved, but can it last?

Poll results

· Salesforce to Buy San Francisco's Ninth-Largest Office Tower [Curbed SF]
· Pinterest Officially Drops Design Center Bid, Pins 651 Brannan [Curbed SF]
· Previous Coverage of the Flower Mart [Curbed SF]
· Behold, Conceptual Designs for SoMa's Grand-Scale 5M Project [Curbed SF]
· Mapping the Median Rent of a One-Bedroom in San Francisco [Curbed SF]
· A Sneak Peek at the Panoramic's Partially Finished Micro-Units [Curbed SF]
· Heatmap Reveals Hotspots for Bike Theft in San Francisco [Curbed SF]
· No Surprise: SF's Housing Market Was Bonkers This Spring [Curbed SF]
· 200-Square-Foot Utility Closet from Airbnb Goes Legit, Seeks a Whopping $1400/Month [Curbed SF]
· Trend Watch [Curbed SF]
· San Francisco of the Early 1990s Is Alive and Well and Open for Business at Thrillhouse Records [Bernalwood]