I wrote back in December, about the bone-headed court decision rejecting the use of eminent domain for Columbia’s expansion into the Manhatanville neighborhood.
Thankfully, the New York Court of Appeals has now overturned that decision. ( Confusingly, that’s the highest court in the state, not the New York Supreme Court.)
Although Columbia is a private institution, if it doesn’t operate for the benefit of the public, then no hospital or museum does either.
If Columbia couldn’t expand, it would be unable to compete with its fellow Ivy League institutions. The smart people would go elsewhere, and since the days of Alexander Hamilton (big hero to me), and before that, the Dutch East India Company, this is a city that above all, relies on its intellectual capital.
Hamilton, by-the-way, attended Columbia (then known as King’s College). He had applied to Princeton, but would only go if they would let him complete his studies quicker than normal. They rejected that idea. King’s knew a smart guy when they saw one.