Dubuque's Upper Bee Branch nears completion - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Dubuque's Upper Bee Branch nears completion

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DUBUQUE (KWWL) -

One of the largest and most visible phases of the Bee Branch Watershed Flood Mitigation Project is just months away from completion.

City leaders have slated the ribbon cutting ceremony for the Upper Bee Branch project in mid-July.

Deron Muehring, a civil engineer with the city, says the park could be open to the public before then.

In the meantime, crews continue to work on landscaping along the day lighted creek.

But even as work wraps up on this portion of the project, there's still much more to be done.

"We still have a lot to do, so, we don't have a lot of time to step back and relax," said Muehring. "We have more improvements. We still have to do improvements upstream of here, to make sure the water gets to the facility. Currently, it's flooding streets, and we want to get that taken care of."

Many have expressed concern during times of heavy rainfall, because the creek fills up, filling much of the park area with water.

Muehring says this is normal.

"When they see all the water in the creek area, it's not in basements, it's not in flooded streets, so we've created an alternate place for that water to go, so it doesn't create the havoc it did before," he said.

Future work on other phases of the project will help that water move more quickly through the area, decreasing the amount of water in the area during times of heavy rainfall.

Overall, this portion of the project is a couple months ahead of schedule, and right on budget, Muehring said.

The majority of the Bee Branch project will be completed by 2021, he said, while work on green alleys will continue for the next couple of decades.

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