The College Football Hall of Fame, which never managed to attract the number of visitors its organizers hoped for after moving it to South Bend in 1995, is being moved to Atlanta to bring it more exposure, organizers told the city.
The National Football Foundation notified the city of South Bend in a letter Tuesday that it is terminating its agreement with the city when its current lease ends on Dec. 31, 2010.
"We take this action not because of any failure on your part, but because we have an opportunity to take the exposure of the Hall of Fame to an entirely new level," wrote Archie Manning, chairman of the National Football Foundation and the College Football Hall of Fame.
South Bend Mayor Stephen Luecke said Wednesday that he met with football foundation officials on Tuesday and they told him that the move would be announced at a news conference Thursday in Atlanta. Officials with the National Football Foundation and the Hall of Fame did not respond to telephone messages Tuesday and Wednesday seeking comment.
Luecke said he was told a group in Atlanta had put together an impressive package, "including some sponsorships that we were never able to develop here in South Bend."