CANTON – Johnson Controls wants to end its relationship with the Hall of Fame Village.
The international corporation also claims that the Hall of Fame Resort & Entertainment Co., which is developing the Canton complex, has defaulted on a “technology as a service agreement” and on a naming rights agreement.
According to Johnson Controls, HOF Village Newco — a Hall of Fame Resort subsidiary — is behind on payments established in the technology agreement. Johnson Controls is seeking $4.75 million from Hall of Fame Resort.
Hall of Fame Resort disputes Johnson Controls’ claims, which are outlined in a filing that Hall of Fame Resort made with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission late Friday afternoon.
Hall of Fame Resort said it believes Johnson Controls has breached the agreement and expects to fight the claims. The company said it will pursue dispute resolution on the agreements, as well as defend itself against the allegations and pursue its own claims, according to the SEC filing.
Hall of Fame Resort and Johnson Controls officials were not immediately available for comment Saturday.
HOF Village, Johnson Controls partners since 2016
Johnson Controls makes fire, heat ventilation and air conditioning, and security equipment for buildings. Its North American operations are based in Milwaukee.
The company has been involved with development of Hall of Fame Village since November 2016 when the company entered agreements worth more than $100 million.
The deal included plans for developing Hall of Fame Village as an entertainment smart city featuring building technologies that would keep operations efficient. Johnson Controls also secured naming rights to the village and to the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s enshrinement week festivities.
The festivities have been referred to as the Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Week Powered by Johnson Controls. It’s unclear if the company’s relationship with the Hall of Fame, which operates separately from Hall of Fame Resort, will be impacted.
Jim Porter, president of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, said the museum is aware of the dispute between Johnson Controls and Hall of Fame Resort.
“There is a process in place for this to be addressed, and the Hall will let this process play out,” Porter said in a statement issued Saturday afternoon.
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The initial agreements were with the Pro Football Hall of Fame and Industrial Realty Group, which at the time was master developer of the project.
The agreements shifted to Hall of Fame Resort when that company formed in July 2020 to manage development of Hall of Fame Village.
According to the SEC filing, Johnson Controls sent a notice of termination for both agreements to Hall of Fame Resort on Tuesday.
Johnson Controls executive departs HOF Resort board
On Friday, Lisa Roy — a vice president with Johnson Controls — told Hall of Fame Resort that she was resigning as a member of the company’s board of directors. Her term as a director was set to expire in 2024.
Officials with the Pro Football Hall of Fame formally proposed development of Hall of Fame Village in 2014. The project started with construction of a new football stadium, with Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium replacing Fawcett Stadium.
Developers hoped to have the village project, initially projected at as a $600 million project, finished by 2019.
Mike Crawford, who managed development of Disney’s park in Shanghai, joined the project in 2018. Plans were repackaged, financing was found and Hall of Fame Resort was formed to move the development forward.
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The company is in the middle of a $300 project — referred to as Phase 2 — that includes the Constellation Center for Excellence office building, a retail strip and a center for performance. The retail operation is supposed to be ready this summer.
Plans next year call for construction of a 180-room hotel and an indoor water park.