The Berkeley Group had sent the tower scheme into crisis by cutting its investment by £7m.
Disaster had turned to triumph with a new consortium on the scene which promised to plough more than £12m into the project.
They believed by adding panoramic lifts, a free-fall thrill-ride, a glass-floored crow’s nest and other attractions they could attract more than 600,000 visitors a year.
The tower was yet to win planning approval.
Senior officers were confident they would win approvals and it was a risk worth taking.
The tower was expected to be completed by November 2000.