University pays $1.8 Million for Manny's

“The Nemer family’s long-fought dispute with the University of Akron’s southward expansion has finally ended – for 15 years, at least. On Tuesday, Manny and Collette Nemer agreed to relinquish their land to UA for $1.8 million. The couple owned Aroma Coffee and Tea and Manny’s Pub, both popular Exchange Street hangouts.”

The Nemer family’s long-fought dispute with the University of Akron’s southward expansion has finally ended – for 15 years, at least.

On Tuesday, Manny and Collette Nemer agreed to relinquish their land to UA for $1.8 million.

The couple owned Aroma Coffee and Tea and Manny’s Pub, both popular Exchange Street hangouts. The Nemers also own lease the adjacent building to Chopstix asian cuisine. Both businesses will be moved to property the Nemers bought on Brown and Wheeler streets.

The settlement, which was reached just hours the Summit County Probate Court would have left the decision to a jury, included a provision preventing UA from filing eminent domain on the Nemers’ new properties for 15 years.

The Nemers’ lawyer, Russell Smith, talked the university into paying double the original settlement offer of $900,000.

In September, Summit County Probate Judge Bill Spicer awarded Manny’s brother, Joe, $2.1 million for the Sun Bar and Grill, a 78 year-old establishment on the same block as the Manny’s properties.

Joe was originally awarded $3.1 million by a probate jury, but UA promptly appealed.

Both decisions came after over a year of lengthy public deliberation.

The University of Akron’s expansion has been a major storyline in Akron for the past few years. The school’s new $61.6 million stadium on Exchange Street has sparked public interest in the university’s expansion, raising questions concerning the ethics of eminent domain.

Many locals questioned the university’s decision to file for eminent domain just days before a new state law that would give the Nemers much more compensation went into effect.

The university will use the land to build a $32.5 million state-of-the-art residence hall.

Manny’s Pub, Aroma Coffee and Tea and Chopstix will remain open until March 1.