The museum has nine months to vacate the building and turn it over to Comic-Con. The official transfer of authority to Comic-Con took place Thursday after months of negotiations with the city.
Shea said the sports museum, with a skeletal staff of six, could not carry on, even with income from renting out the facility for special events.
“It’s the changing world of museums and how people use them,” Shea said. “It just got to the point where, long term, it was understood it was not going to drive the (visitor) traffic that would make it sustainable.”
The most recent tax return in 2015 from the Hall of Champions indicated expenses of more than $1.5 million and income of $986,810. Admissions totaled only $48,509.
Shea said the Hall of Fame, consisting of plaques and other items, would be relocated possibly as early as this summer to the ground level of the Western Metals Building that occupies the western edge of Petco Park. The hall’s annual awards program and other activities will continue.
Comic-Con has not released any details of what it has in mind for the museum. However, the announcement could indicate that the nonprofit was committing to a long-term presence in San Diego, beyond its present agreement to hold its main convention at the San Diego Convention Center that expires after next year.
Convention and tourism officials have been negotiating with Comic-Con to extend its agreement even as they try to expand the center to accommodate Comic-Con and other big conventions.
Comic-Con attracts more than 130,000 attendees annually.