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365 Documents the Excitement

Once again, Dubuque365.com will follow the construction, excitement, questions and community impact of the America's River Project, now entering its second phase. Check back regularly for constantly updated information on the Port of Dubuque rehabilitation effort including photos, press releases, interviews and more. So... let's get started.

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Diamond Jo Construction Update (Thursday November 29, 2007)
With an official groundbreaking ceremony held just a few weeks ago, and work having begun on the former massive parking lot on Bell Street a few months back, it's clear that the next iteration of the Diamond Jo Casino is well underway. As part of our ongoing coverage of the America's River Project: Phase II, we at 365 decided to check in on Todd Moyer, general manager of the Diamond Jo, for an update on the casino's construction and an idea of what will be happening in the coming months. (Click here for the fill article)

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City of Dubuque and Diamond Jo Groundbreaking Celebration
Kicks Off America's River Phase II

Click here for photos from the groundbreaking event.
Dubuque, Iowa -- The City of Dubuque and the Diamond Jo Casino broke ground today on the Diamond Jo's new casino and entertainment complex and the City's parking facility. Representing more than $100 million in new construction, the new casino and parking facility are the first two projects of America's River Project, Phase II. The new casino, state-of- the-art bowling center, dining and entertainment facility and phase one of the parking facility will be complete in fall 2008. Click here for the entire press release.

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Port Mixed-Use Development
Wayne Briggs is leading a team of investors in the planning of a massive mixed-use development. And we do mean massive: 350,000 - 500,000 square feet of buildings comprising between 4 - 9 stories, with an estimated $70-75 million price tag. The first floor of the buildings will be occupied by retail space, with office space above those and then luxury condominiums ($200,000 - $500,000) on the uppermost levels. This is the project that includes the renovation of the Adams Company building for Durrant. Construction is planned for late 2007 or early ‘08, and will likely move in stages.

Public Parking Ramp
Because all the developments at the Port are going to need, you know, parking space, the Diamond Jo and the city have it covered. They’re planning to build an impressive 1,100-1,300-space, $21 million parking ramp in the port, set to open in late 2008 to coincide with the grand opening of the Diamond Jo’s new facility. The ramp will be the largest parking facility in the city, and is currently being designed by Durrant’s Chris Wand (a.k.a. 365’s Wando).

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Visiting Boat Docks
Mindful of the economic opportunity that the Mississippi River affords us, the city is building visiting boat slips, designed for short-term stays, for vessels in both the Ice Harbor and the main river channel. The Ice Harbor docks will be completed for the summer of 2007, but the construction of the main river docks is dependent on the raising of funds. Making it even easier to take a boat out on the river ... we love it!

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Diamond Jo Casino Updated Renderings
Here's a look at a more recent rendering of the Diamond Jo Casino facilities at the Port of Dubuque.

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Star Brewery
A familiar name on these pages, Wayne Briggs is also spearheading an $8 million project to renovate the former Dubuque Star Brewery for use as commercial and retail space. The building will include a 10,000-square-foot winery and tasting room for Stone Cliff Winery, the Dubuque County-based winery. The second floor will include a new restaurant, and other tenants are planned, as well. The construction is already going on as you read this, with a target opening within calendar 2007. The Star is north of the Grand River Center, near Veterans Drive and Bell St.

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VISION IOWA BRINGS $8 MILLION TO DUBUQUE
February 15, 2007

The Great Rivers Center, River Research Center and RiverMax Digital Theater at the National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium at the Port of Dubuque has just received a huge financial shot in the arm from the Vision Iowa Board. The Board yesterday granted 8-million dollars to the Dubuque County Historical Society which will be used in the construction process. Museum and Aquarium Executive Director Jerry Enzler says the total cost of the museum project is 38-million dollars. He says the 8-million dollar grant will support the 218 million dollar America's River Phase Two development, which includes over 180 million in leverage activity. The 8-million dollar grant is the first granted by he Vision Iowa Board in almost 3 years and the second one given to Dubuque. Enzler says most of the leverage construction should be complete and opened in 2008. The Great Rivers Center is expected to open in 2010.

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Port of Dubuque Park
The city of Dubuque is planning the construction of a brand-new public park and green plaza in the Port, located just south of the new McGraw-Hill office complex, so it’ll be near East 5th and Bell Streets.

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Durrant Group Move
The Durrant Group is planning to move from its West Locust location and into the Port, renovating the former Adams Company building and turning it into its new corporate headquarters. The development is being done in conjunction with developer Wayne Briggs, and it will be part of his planned Port developments. The $3 million project will begin this year and will likely take no more than a year to complete. The Adams Company building is at East 5th and Ice Harbor Drive.

 

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