“Manuel Nemer, affectionately known as Manny by his patrons, is the owner of two establishments on the university side of Exchange Street between Union and Spicer Streets. It’s a prime location. It is also exactly where the new on-campus University of Akron football stadium is planned to sit.””
Manuel Nemer, affectionately known as Manny by his patrons, is the owner of two establishments on the university side of Exchange Street between Union and Spicer Streets.
It’s a prime location.
It is also exactly where the new on-campus University of Akron football stadium is planned to sit.
Unfortunately for UA, Nemer doesn’t plan on moving any time soon.
A couple years ago, they took a survey and they asked if I was interested in selling, he said. I said no, and they haven’t asked since.
Nemer said there was no talk about money, it was strictly a survey of area businesses to see who would be interested in selling.
A real estate company is handling the puchasing of local land for he stadium on UA’s behalf, said Ted Curtis, vice president of capital planning.
They have contacted people, he said.
However, the list of businesses UA has contacted and plan to contact is not being released.
That’s a long list, I don’t know who they’ve contacted, Curtis said. But we will not negotiate in the newspaper.
That’s bad for business.
Regardless, Nemer has made his position clear.
He likes the idea of a stadium on campus. He said he would rather be a part of the new stadium and the atmosphere it would bring, rather than sell his businesses.
I’ve been here on the Zip Strip for more than 20 years and it’s been very successful for me and has been good for my relationship with the city and the patrons.
Nemer said he understands people might see him as the bad guy. However, he wishes people would try to understand his side of the story.
He has owned Manny’s Pub since 1983 and Aroma Coffee since 1993.
I’m happy. I’m not getting rich, but I’m making a lot of friends, he said. I don’t want to be the bad guy, I want to be part of it.
This property means a lot to me. It’s very sentimental, he said. To work hard and accomplish what you did, it makes you very proud and nobody can take your pride away.
After 25 years, Nemer said he has seen a lot of people come in and out of the area and considers his patrons as friends. He said he knows most of his customers by name and even what they drink as soon as they walk through the door.
There is always someone here. Either me, my wife, my kids, someone is always here, Nemer said. It’s a family atmosphere. People don’t come here because they just want a cup of coffee.
I’d like to leave it for my kids. It’s my legacy, he said. It has been 25 years – successful years.
We want to be on a good relationship with everybody, Nemer said. I would like to have the stadium on campus if I can help in any shape and any form.