RETIREMENT flats are back on track for Linlithgow as First Bus has sold the High Street depot.
Last February, plans for a retirement complex from McCarthy and Stone bit the dust as First Bus decided to retain the depot.
But it has now re-ignited its multi-million pound plan after First Bus finally made a move to sell up.
Buses stopped operating from the depot on November 19.
McCarthy and Stone hope to create 41 retirement apartments for the over-60s and two retail units with work beginning early next year.
A delighted Steve Wiseman, managing director of McCarthy and Stone, said: “Missives have now been signed and we hope to make a start on site early in 2013.
‘‘I know that when our previous plans stalled, there was a great deal of disappointment in the town.
‘‘Some 130 people came to our public exhibitions in January 2011 and they expressed strong approval for the scheme.
‘‘They will be pleased to know that the new development will go ahead as originally designed.”
McCarthy and Stone have a ‘minded to grant’ planning consent from West Lothian Council, subject to concluding a Section 75 legal agreement, expected to be finalised by the end of January.
The developers first plan to demolish the bus garage and carry out an archaeological survey before building work begins.
Steve added: “We believe that the new development will bring a range of benefits not only to the residents but also to the wider community.
‘‘It will remove what are rather undistinguished buildings, reinstate a high quality frontage and, most of all, add vitality to the High Street.
‘‘And of course it will provide greatly needed new homes for the town’s growing elderly population.”
Jobs will be created during construction and sales phases and also after the development is complete.
The company is also looking to sell or lease the two retail units looking onto the High Street.
A First Bus spokesman could not confirm how much money had changed hands but said that progress had been made in selling the depot.