DEVELOPERS want to make the high-rise apartment building destined to stand on the site of the Tented Market even taller — for the third time.

What began as a proposal for a two-storey restaurant block has since morphed into an extravagant tower of apartments — first with 12 storeys at its highest point and now 15.

An original application last year to build a modest restaurant complex in place of the Tented Market was rejected by Swindon Borough Council’s planning committee.

But the developers appealed and won, leaving Swindon’s taxpayers with a hefty bill and the council’s planning team with little stomach for another fight over the project.

Within months a new application was submitted which would have seen the restaurants built as planned, but with a 12-storey tower of 101 flats on top.

And now the plan has changed yet again.

The new vision is for a building in two parts, a lower level block standing at eight stories high and a tower, taller still at 15 storeys.

The news is likely to come as a shock to those objectors who had hoped to see the height reduced and not increased through the planning process.

The taller tower structure puts the plans even further at odds with the views of South Swindon Parish Council’s Planning Committee whose letter of objection called for it to be reduced from 12 to six storeys, not increased to 15.

But the parish council has no say over whether permission is ultimately granted — that is down to a recommendation from council planning officers and a vote by borough councillors.

A letter from NC Architects to the council’s head of planning suggests that the revised plan has been put together with the close involvement of those parties and taking onboard feedback from two visits to the South West Design Review Panel.

According to a revised design statement submitted, the council’s urban designer suggested that reducing the bulk of the 12-storey tower and replacing it with a “more slender and elegant solution” would enhance the quality of the proposal. The result is the thinner, but taller, design.

Christopher Moore, director of NC Architects, said that the work had resulted in the new proposals “overcoming, following, or avoiding nearly all of the issues raised”.

He argued his team had gone to great lengths to engage the public through an exhibition at the Central Library, although he dismissed most of the feedback received as “not relevant at all”.

Mr Moore appeared confident that the proposals would meet with the approval of planners and councillors when a decision is reached next month.

He wrote: “I trust that our considerable efforts will procure a strong officer recommendation of the proposed scheme and that the members of the committee will recognise the efforts made and approve the scheme at your October committee.”

The revision means a new consultation window has opened and the public have until September 20 to submit their comments.