The Audubon Ballroom in Washington Heights was the site of Malcolm X's assassination and later of a Columbia expansion controversy.
Two years after Malcolm X's assassination, the ballroom was shut down by the city for failure to pay back taxes and eventually sold to Columbia, which planned to demolish it as part of the Audubon Business and Technology Center, a planned redevelopment adjacent to the Medical Center that was a public-private partnership between Columbia and the city and state. Protests and lawsuits ensued, notably a 1992 student protest that involved the takeover of Hamilton Hall. Eventually, Columbia decided to preserve the building but incorporate it into its expansion plans. It has now been painstakingly restored and features a mural and statue dedicated to Malcolm X. In 2005, a museum dedicated to Malcolm X opened in the building as well. Its official name is now the Mary Woodward Lasker Biomedical Research Building.