THE former Alva Glen Hotel is expected to be acquired by the council on a Compulsory Purchase Order.

Last month the Enterprise and Environment Committee of Clackmannanshire Council agreed to make a formal offer to the owner, and in the event that the offer was declined, to commence compulsory purchase proceedings and report the matter to council no later than 14 March 2013 for a final decision to be taken on the required action.

On Thursday 20 December, councillors were told that an offer had been made but then rejected by the owners and that it was considered unlikely that any agreement would be reached on a sale value.

The report to Committee advised members that a valuation report from the District Valuer had assessed the property as having a 'nominal' value but that an inflated offer had been made based on the estimated opportunity cost of avoiding the need for compulsory purchase action.

Council leader, councillor Gary Womersley said, "It is perhaps not surprising that the offer has been rejected, given that the owners appear to have a very inflated view of the current value of their property. It has been suggested to them that they should consult their own professional advisers and in particular obtain their own valuation of the property from surveyors experienced in the valuation of local commercial property.

"The former Alva Glen Hotel has become a dangerous eyesore and there is little to be gained in prolonging unproductive negotiations if the council is prepared to go down this route. Further evidence of the continuing deterioration of the condition of the building is the recent direct action the council has taken in respect of a dangerous chimney on the property."

"That said, given the amount of time that the Compulsory Purchase process can take, we have agreed to make a compulsory purchase order at an early stage whilst in parallel continuing to seek to acquire the property by negotiation. As such, we have left the door open if the owners change their minds and decide to sell."

The council's Housing Strategy identified Alva town centre as one where poor property condition needs to be addressed and it is envisaged that the Clackmannanshire Local Development Plan will promote town centre regeneration which will include the provision of affordable and social housing.