The conversion of the Carlton Abbey Hotel to a 55-bed nursing home is hoped to be completed by the end of 2013.
That is according to Seamus Crawley, an executive director of the Sonas Group, which recently agreed a deal to purchase the building, dependant on planning permission being granted.
“We’re still at the pre-planning stage but we hope to lodge a planning application within the next two weeks,” Mr Crawley told the Leader.
He added that there shouldn’t be a huge amount of work required to convert the building and hoped renovation work could begin in March or April.
“It could take up to six months work so we’re looking at the end of 2013,” he said.
The nursing home will provide 60 to 80 jobs in Athy, and a similar number of construction jobs during the renovation.
The Sonas Group already owns nursing homes around the country, in Athlone, Roscommon, Sligo and Clonmel.
Mr Crawley explained that the company had been researching areas where they could open a new nursing home.
“In Athy we found there would be a need for a nursing home. And then the property became available.”
Sonas were the first company in Ireland to receive the “Q Mark” for quality and excellence from Excellence Ireland for all of their Care Centres.