After nearly four months of back-and-forth, the Edgartown historic district commission approved a controversial home renovation on South Water street Thursday.

The proposed renovation of 81 South Water street from architect Patrick Ahearn, on behalf of homeowner and real estate mogul David Malm, had drawn backlash from dozens of neighbors and residents when it was first presented in April. Most were concerned that the plans would jeopardize one of the last public views of the Edgartown harbor.

Since then, Mr. Ahearn submitted multiple applications significantly scaling down the proposed modifications at the request of the commission. On Thursday, the project received the final go-ahead provided that Mr. Ahearn eliminate a proposed pool from the application entirely.

The pool, which would have faced Edgartown harbor and included a stone retaining wall and 36-inch fencing, had been a significant sticking point for the commission. Both commission chair Julia Tarka and commissioner James Cisek felt the pool was inappropriate for the property, which once housed the Vineyard’s first governor, Thomas Mayhew.

In hopes of finally getting approval, Mr. Ahearn opted to scrap the pool plans from his application. A motion to approve the home renovation without the pool, fencing, and retaining wall passed 4-2.

Ms. Tarka and Mr. Cisek both voted against the project but did not elaborate on their positions. Ms. Tarka noted that in the event that Mr. Ahearn’s client decided to pursue a pool later, the historic district commission would still need to review. Any harbor-facing pool would be visible from the harbor, a public way, putting it in the historic district commission’s purview, she said.

“At this juncture we will not be considering the pool any further…not to this board for sure,” Mr. Ahearn told the commission.

The hearing had originally been scheduled for July 20 but had been postponed after town counsel recommended that residents receive more time to review the updated plans. The rescheduled meeting on August 3 was closed to public comment, but multiple letters from abutters complained about what they saw as an incomplete and rushed application. The proposed renovation had gone through seven iterations — including one application that contained three different potential plans — before receiving final approval.

The project will next move to the conservation commission.

Residents who had previously spoken against the renovations acknowledged the new plans were greatly improved from what had been proposed earlier this spring, even if some features, like the building’s distinctive turret, had been changed.

“I would have wished the commission had hung in a little bit longer and gotten a somewhat better result,” resident Michael Hirschfeld said after the hearing. “They got sort of half the cake or maybe less than half the cake.”

Someone walking on South Water street won’t be able to see the turret under the new plans, he said.

“In an ideal world, I would have liked to see [more historic elements] preserved,” Mr. Hirschfeld said. “But nothing’s perfect.”