Quaker Square

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Quaker Square
General information
Type Student Residence
Location 135 S Broadway St, University of Akron, Akron, Ohio, United States
Completed 1932
Opening 1975
Quaker Oats Cereal Factory
Quaker Square is located in Ohio
Quaker Square
Quaker Square is located in the US
Quaker Square
Location 120 E. Mill St., Akron, Ohio
Coordinates 41°4′52″N 81°30′54″W / 41.08111°N 81.51500°W / 41.08111; -81.51500Coordinates: 41°4′52″N 81°30′54″W / 41.08111°N 81.51500°W / 41.08111; -81.51500
Area 4 acres (2 ha)
Built 1886
NRHP reference # 78002195[1]
Added to NRHP December 8, 1978

Quaker Square was a shopping and dining complex located in downtown Akron, Ohio which is now used by the University of Akron. Quaker Square was the original Quaker Oats factory; the complex consists of the former mill, factory, and silos. The buildings were bought in the early 1970s by developers who sought to create a unique, useful home for shops and restaurants. The buildings were bought by the University of Akron in 2007. The hotel has been converted to a residence hall. The retail space consisted of several small shops and restaurants, while offices were on the floors above. Quaker Square was open to the general public until September 18, 2015. The hotel no longer accepts reservations as the former hotel rooms and the entire complex is operated exclusively for student and university use. However, ballrooms are still available for catered events and conferences.[2]


The Quaker Oats company was formed by the merger of several businesses, one was the Akron-based German Mills American Oatmeal Company founded by Ferdinand Schumacher. Schumacher's facility, first built in 1872, was destroyed by fire in 1886, then was rebuilt at the same location. Those buildings formed the basis of the Quaker Oats Cereal Factory. The complex consisted of cereal production facilities, warehouses, and rail-siding sheds.[3] Quaker Oats built 36 grain silos on the site in 1932. Each silo was 120 feet tall and 24 feet in diameter, and together they housed 1,500,000 bushels of grain.[4]

The complex is now the only remaining visual reminder of what was once Akron's largest single employer. Quaker Oats terminated production in Akron in 1970. The entire complex was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1972.[3]


The facility was repurposed in March 1973, and reopened 1 April 1975 with four shops and an ice cream parlor.[4]

The silos were converted into a Hilton Hotel which opened in 1980.[5] Later it became a Crowne Plaza hotel. The hotel is built into the suite of silos and is famed for its 196 completely round rooms. (Source: "Quaker Chronicle" promotional sheet available at the hotel.)

The Trackside Grille & Ice Cream Parlor, a restaurant themed with railroads which run parallel to the building, also provides a narrative of Akron’s history. The Trackside Dining Room was constructed with the beams and columns of the factory building. (Source: "Quaker Chronicle" promotional sheet available at the hotel.)

The Quaker Square General Store offers oatmeal cookies, pie-baking classes for children, and "nostalgic" candy. (Source: "Quaker Chronicle" promotional sheet available at the hotel.)

Purchase by University of Akron[edit]

In mid-June 2007 the University of Akron bought the complex for $22,679,000 with plans to convert it into student housing and office space.[5] The university planned to house more than 400 students in the converted hotel starting with the 2008 spring semester.[6] In January 2008, the university began to use the upper floors of the hotel as a residence hall.

Under contract with UA, RDA Management of Fairlawn operated 95 hotel rooms on the four bottom floors of the silos for the following two years. The university agreed to keep those rooms available to the public for that period to give the city an opportunity to secure more hotel space for downtown visitors and tourists. On June 30, 2013 the hotel was closed and converted entirely into student housing. The shops at Quaker Square as well as Trackside closed in 2016. The only remaining store is a Zee's store which is a convienence store for students to buy groceries and snacks. [7]


Former Amtrak Station[edit]

Amtrak inter-city rail station
Amtrak Akron.png
Former Amtrak station
Location 96 E. Bowery St. Akron, OH 44308
Coordinates 41°04′48″N 81°30′56″W / 41.08000°N 81.51556°W / 41.08000; -81.51556
Owned by Amtrak
Platforms 1 (former)
Tracks 2
Other information
Station code AKO
Opened August 10, 1998
Closed March 7, 2005
  Former services  
Preceding station   BSicon LOGO Amtrak2.svg Amtrak   Following station
toward Chicago
Three Rivers

Akron was a short-lived Amtrak station in Akron, Ohio. The station served the Three Rivers train in the 6 years the station was open.

Site of former Amtrak platform, facing North

See also[edit]


External links[edit]