Bee Branch Railroad Culverts

Estimated Completion - 2021

The Railroad Culverts Project is a critical phase of the larger Bee Branch Watershed Flood Mitigation Project and, once completed, will increase the flood mitigation system’s capacity to protect the area from a 75-year rain event to a 500-year rain event. The railroad culverts project involves using micro-tunneling methods to install six, 8-foot diameter culverts under the Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) tracks along Garfield Ave. This will allow stormwater to drain more efficiently from the Upper Bee Branch Creek to the Lower Bee Branch Creek and 16th St. Detention Basin.

When the City sought public input on the design of the Bee Branch Creek improvements, residents voiced a desire for pedestrian passage under the railroad tracks. The proposed plans and specifications include the City assuming ownership of the two existing Bee Branch box culverts and utilizing them for both flood control and as a hike/bike path under the railroad tracks when creek levels permit. This will allow for the direct connection of the trail systems associated with the lower and upper sections of the Bee Branch Creek.

Temporary Noise Variance

The City of Dubuque approved a temporary noise variance for the micro-tunneling operation under the Canadian Pacific railroad tracks. The contractor is allowed to work Monday - Saturday from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. until October 15, 2020. Construction will be allowed on Sundays and Holidays only as needed due to delays from weather, unknown obstructions, equipment downtime, and Canadian Pacific rail traffic.

Please note, the contractor will keep all excessive noises, to the greatest extent possible, within normal working hours 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday – Friday and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.

Noise ordinances are enforced by the Dubuque Police Department. Complaints regarding noise outside of the approved ordinance hours should be directed to the Police Department at 563.589.4415.

Project Schedule

  • Initiate Public Bidding Process: Dec. 17, 2018
  • Publish Notice to Bidder: Dec. 21, 2018
  • Public Hearing Plans & Specifications: Jan. 7, 2019
  • Receipt of Bid Proposals: Jan. 22, 2019
  • Award Construction Contract: Feb. 4, 2019
  • Improvements Functional: Fall 2020
  • Final Project Completion: June 30, 2021

Live Webcam

A live webcam is installed at the project site. Watch the micro-tunneling process in real time! 

The contractor will be working 10 to 12 hour days. The tunneling is not continuous. They must stop frequently to load additional sections of pipe and install and/or remove spacers. They are also required to stop tunneling when trains pass through the project site. They expect to tunnel approximately 20 to 30 feet per day and anticipate it will take 7 to 10 days to install one pipe. They will then remove the tunneling machine from the receiving pit, move it back to the launch pit, and get ready to install the next pipe.

Video Updates