Dubuque, Iowa

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Dubuque, Iowa
Downtown Dubuque, Iowa, Oct 2008
Downtown Dubuque, Iowa, Oct 2008
Flag of Dubuque, Iowa
Official seal of Dubuque, Iowa
Official logo of Dubuque, Iowa
Nickname(s): "The Key City", "City of Five Flags", "Masterpiece on the Mississippi"
Motto: "Showing the Spirit"
Location in the State of Iowa
Location in the State of Iowa
Dubuque, Iowa is located in USA
Dubuque, Iowa
Dubuque, Iowa
Location in the United States
Coordinates: Lua error in Module:Coordinates at line 668: callParserFunction: function "#coordinates" was not found.
Country United States
State  Iowa
County Dubuque
Incorporated 1833
Founded by Julien Dubuque
 • Type Council-Manager
 • Mayor Roy D. Buol
 • City manager Michael C. Van Milligen
 • City 31.22 sq mi (80.86 km2)
 • Land 29.97 sq mi (77.62 km2)
 • Water 1.25 sq mi (3.24 km2)
Elevation 617 ft (188 m)
Population (2010)[2]
 • City 57,637
 • Estimate (2014[3]) 58,436
 • Rank 10th in Iowa
 • Density 1,923.2/sq mi (742.6/km2)
 • Metro 96,370
Time zone CST (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP codes 52001–52004, 52099
Area code(s) 563
FIPS code 19-22395
GNIS feature ID 0456040
Website www.cityofdubuque.org

Dubuque Listeni/dəˈbjuːk/ is a city in and the county seat of Dubuque County, Iowa, United States,[4] located along the Mississippi River. In 2013, its population was 58,253, making it the tenth-largest city in the state[5]

The city lies at the junction of three states: Iowa, Illinois, and Wisconsin, a region locally known as the Tri-State Area. It serves as the main commercial, industrial, educational, and cultural center for the area. Geographically, it is part of the Driftless Area, a portion of North America that escaped all three phases of the Wisconsinian Glaciation.

It is one of the few large cities in Iowa with hills, and a tourist destination featuring the city's unique architecture and river location. It is home to five institutions of higher education, making it a center for culture and learning.

Dubuque has long been a center of manufacturing, but the economy has recently[when?] had rapid growth and diversified in to other areas. In 2005, the city led the state and the Midwest in job growth, ranking as the 22nd fastest-growing economy nationally.[6] Today[when?], alongside industry, the city has large health care, education, tourism, publishing, and financial service sectors.


Following the 1763 defeat of the French in the Seven Years' War, Spain gained control of the Louisiana Territory west of the Mississippi River; the British took over all territory to the east, as well as Canada.[7]

The first permanent settler in what is now Dubuque was a Quebecois pioneer, Julien Dubuque, who arrived in 1785. In 1788, he received permission from the Spanish government and the local Fox tribe of American Indians to mine the area's rich lead deposits.Control of Louisiana and Dubuque's mines shifted briefly back to France in 1800, then to the United States in 1803, following the Louisiana Purchase. Dubuque died in 1810, but the wealth of minerals drew a number of new pioneers and settlers, mostly French and other Europeans.[citation needed]

Saint Mary's, one of 11 Catholic churches in Dubuque.

The current City of Dubuque, named after Julien Dubuque, was settled at the southern end of a large, flat plain adjacent to the Mississippi River. The city was officially chartered in 1833, located in then-unorganized territory of the United States. The region was designated as the Iowa Territory in 1838, and was included in the newly created State of Iowa in 1846. After the lead resources were exhausted, the city became home to numerous industries. Because of its proximity to forests in Minnesota and Wisconsin, Dubuque became a center for the timber industry, and was later dominated by various millworking businesses.[citation needed]

Between 1860 and 1880, Dubuque was one of the 100 largest urban areas in the United States.[8] Also important were boat building, brewing, and later, the railroad industry. Iowa's first church was built by Methodists in 1834. Since then, Iowans have followed a variety of religious traditions.[9][page needed]

Old store

Beginning in the mid-19th century, and into the early 20th century, thousands of poor German and Irish Catholic immigrants came to the city to work in the manufacturing centers. The city's large Roman Catholic congregations led to its designation as the seat of the newly established Archdiocese of Dubuque. Numerous convents, abbeys, and other religious institutions were built. The ethnic German and Irish descendants maintain a strong Catholic presence in the city. Nicholas E. Gonner (1835-1892), a Catholic immigrant from Luxembourg, founded the Catholic Publishing Company of Dubuque, Iowa. His son Nicholas E. Gonner (1835-1892) took over in 1892, editing two German language weeklies, an English language weekly, and the Daily Tribune, the only Catholic daily newspaper ever published in the United States.[10]

Early in the 20th century, Dubuque was one of several sites of a brass era automobile company, in this case Adams-Farwell; like most others, it folded. Subsequently, although Dubuque grew significantly, industrial activity remained the mainstay of the economy until the 1980s. During that time, a series of changes in manufacturing, and the onset of the "Farm Crisis" led to a large decline in the sector, and the city's economy as a whole. However, the economy diversified rapidly in the 1990s, shifting away from heavy industry.[citation needed]

Today[when?], tourism, high technology, and publishing are among the largest and fastest-growing businesses. Dubuque attracts well over 1,500,000 tourists annually, and this number continues to increase. The city has encouraged development of the America's River Project's tourist attractions in the Port of Dubuque, the expansion of the city's colleges, and the continued growth of shopping centers, like Asbury Plaza.[citation needed]

Awards and recognition

Dubuque has received a number of awards and recognition for its redevelopment during the past decade.

  • 2001-1st recipient of the Vision Iowa Grant, awarded for $40 million to revitalize the Port of Dubuque.
  • 2006-Urban Pioneer Award by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, in recognition of Dubuque's 20-year commitment to the revitalization of the city's center.
  • 2006- Audrey Nealson Community Development Achievement Award that is given out by the National Community Development Association. The award recognized exemplary uses of Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds which best addressed the needs of low-income families and neighborhoods.
  • 2006-Money Magazine identified Dubuque as having the "shortest commute time" - 11.8 minutes, of all U.S cities.[11]
  • 2007, 2008 and 2010-ranked among the "100 Best Communities for Young People" by the America's Promise Youth Foundation.[12]
  • April 2007- ranked 15th in the "Best Small Places For Business and Careers'" ranking by Forbes magazine, climbing 60 spots from 2006.[13]
  • June 2007-All-America City Award, one of 10 cities recognized nationally.[14]
  • June 2008-Named as the "Most Livable" Small City by the United States Conference of Mayors (USCM).[15]
  • 2009-ranked the 8th best small metro area to launch a small business by CNNMoney.com.
  • 2009-Dubuque was honored as the United States Department of Commerce's Excellence in Economic Development for Excellence in Historic Preservation-led Strategies. Dubuque received the award for its commitment to research-based, market driven economic development in helping grow the local economy.
  • 2009-one of America's Top 100 Places to Live, by RelocateAmerica.com's .
  • 2009-"America's Crown Community Award," by American City and Country Magazine, for collaboration that resulted in IBM's decision to locate a new global technology service delivery center in Dubuque.
  • In 2010-Forbes has selected Dubuque as the best small city to raise a family in the country.
  • In 2010-Forbes ranked Dubuque as the top community for job growth, up from 157th in 2009.
  • 2010-Excellence in Economic Development Award, presented by the International Economic Development Council.
  • 2010-Greater Dubuque Development was recognized by the Mid-American Economic Development Council for its programs in Business Retention and Expansion and Workforce Development.
  • 2010-Third most livable community in the world at the International Awards for Livable Communities.
  • 2010-ranked 7th best city in the U.S. for economic growth of cities under 200,000 people, by Business Facilities Magazine.
  • 2010-ranked as the third best city for job growth by careerbuilder.com.
  • 2011-one of the 10 smartest cities on the planet, Fast Company magazine. (Dubuque was the only city from the western hemisphere on the list.)
  • 2011-2010 Drinking Water Safe Revolving Loan Fund Award by EPA for Sustainable Public Health Protection.
  • 2012- Second All-America City Award, one of 10 cities recognized nationally.All-America City Award
  • 2013- Third All-America City Award, one of 10 cities recognized nationally.
  • 2014- USA Today named Dubuque the fourth "Best American Riverfront." [16]
  • 2015- ASA D Northern National Men's Slow Pitch Champions. Team: Kass & Co.


Dubuque is located at Lua error in Module:Coordinates at line 668: callParserFunction: function "#coordinates" was not found. (42.504321, -90.686865).[17]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 31.22 square miles (80.86 km2), of which, 29.97 square miles (77.62 km2) is land and 1.25 square miles (3.24 km2) is water.[1]



Downtown Dubuque is the location of the city's central business district and many of its government and cultural institutions. It is the center of Dubuque's transportation and commercial sectors, and functions as the hub to the various outlying districts and neighborhoods. It is located in the east-central portion of the city, along the Mississippi River, and includes all of the area north of Maus Park, south of 17th Street, east of the bluffline, and west of the river.

The area is made up of several distinct neighborhoods, each of which has a unique history and character. These neighborhoods include: Cable Car Square/Cathedral Square, the Central Business District, Jackson Park/Upper Main, Lower Main, and the Warehouse District. An area of special note within Downtown Dubuque is the Port of Dubuque, which has seen a massive amount of new investment and new construction. The downtown area includes a number of significant buildings, many of which are historic, reflecting the city's early and continuing importance to the region. Important sites downtown include:

North End

Eagle Point Park in Dubuque's North End.

Dubuque's North End area was first settled in the late 19th century by working-class German immigrants to the city. The German-American community in Dubuque sought to establish their own German Catholic churches, separate from the Irish Catholic churches in Dubuque's downtown and South End. Today, the area still retains its working-class roots, and is still home to some of the largest factories operating in Dubuque.

The North End is roughly defined, but generally includes all of the territory north of 17th Street, and east of North Grandview Avenue and Kaufmann Avenue. The area is made up of two main hills (west of Central Avenue, and west of Lincoln Avenue), and two main valleys, the Couler Valley (between the two hills), and the "Point" neighborhood, adjacent to the Mississippi River. It is home to Dubuque's two main cemeteries, Linwood Cemetery (established for Protestants), and Mt. Calvary Cemetery (established for Catholics).

Other important sites in the North End include:

South End

The South End has been the traditional neighborhood of Irish-Americans in the city, and became known as "Little Dublin," specifically centered around southern portions of Downtown Dubuque. Remnants of Irish culture still survive in the South End, with Irish pubs such as Murph's South End Tap, The Lift, and stores such as Shamrock Imports still operating in the area. Irish culture in Dubuque also revolves around the city's Irish Catholic churches, namely: St. Columbkille's, St. Patrick's, and St. Raphael's Cathedral.[citation needed]

Today[when?], the South End is much larger, and includes all of the land south of Dodge Street, east of Fremont Avenue but including areas of west of it, and north of the Key West area. The South End has many of the city's "old money" neighborhoods, especially along South Grandview and Fremont Avenues, and around the Dubuque Golf & Country Club. Many South End neighborhoods have a more spacious and park-like appearance, contrasting with the more urban North End.[citation needed]

Other Important sites in the South End include:

West End

Dubuque's West End is a large, mostly suburban area settled almost entirely after the Second World War. Development was spurred by the onset of the massive baby-boom generation, and sharply higher demand for new housing in the city. Expansion began with the construction of the "John Deere Homes" in the Hillcrest Park neighborhood, which were financed by Deere & Company for its workers. Soon after, many large shopping centers were built, including Plaza 20, and the then-largest enclosed shopping mall in Iowa, Kennedy Mall.

Today, the area continues to expand at a rapid pace, with new subdivisions and shopping centers stretching out for miles from the city's downtown. The West End is not clearly defined, but is generally considered to include all of the suburban-style growth west of North Grandview Avenue, the University of Dubuque, and the Valentine Park neighborhood. The area is home to a wide variety of mostly middle-class neighborhoods and city parks, but also includes many of the city's largest schools, industrial parks, and all of its large shopping centers. The expansion of the area has also led to rapid growth in suburban Asbury and exurban Peosta, Iowa, both of which adjoin the West Side.

Other Important sites in the West End include:


Dubuque has a humid continental climate (Köppen Dfa), which gives it four distinct seasons. However, local weather is often not as extreme as that found in other parts of the Midwest, such as Minnesota or Wisconsin. Spring is usually wet and rainy, summers are sunny and warm, autumn is mild, and winters are typically cloudy and snowy.

Climate data for Dubuque, Iowa
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °F (°C) 25
Average low °F (°C) 9
Average precipitation inches (mm) 1.3
Source: Weatherbase[18]


Dubuque has several buildings on the National Register of Historic Places.

There are a number of notable parks in Dubuque, particularly Eagle Point Park and the Mines of Spain State Recreation Area.

The Grand River Center overlooks the Mississippi River in the Port of Dubuque.

Dubuque's waterfront features the Ice Harbor and just north of it, the Diamond Jo Casino and Grand River Event Center. Land for this project was acquired from several businesses through condemnation of their properties under eminent domain.[citation needed]

Dubuque is also the home of the Colts Drum and Bugle Corps. The Colts are a Drum Corps International World Class ensemble and tour the country each summer to attend drum corps competitions. Each summer the Colts and Dubuque host "Music on the March", a Drum Corps International-sanctioned marching competition at Dubuque Senior High School. Dubuque is the second-smallest city in the nation to support a World Class drum corps.[citation needed]


The city is home of the Dubuque Fighting Saints. They began playing in the Tier I Junior A United States Hockey League in the Fall of 2010 at the new Mystique Ice Center. Dubuque was home to the original Fighting Saints team from 1980-2001 when the team relocated to Tulsa, Oklahoma. From 2001-2010 The Dubuque Thunderbirds replaced the Fighting Saints playing in the Tier III Junior A Central States Hockey League at the Five Flags Center. The 2010-2011 Fighting Saints were USHL Clark Cup Champions after defeating the Green Bay Gamblers three games to one in the best-of-five Clark Cup Final. In 2013 the Fighting Saints again won the Clark Cup, defeating the Fargo Force three games to none in the best-of-five Final. The team averaged over 2,600 fans per game in the 2013-2014 regular season, the highest average in team history.



Dubuque's daily newspaper, the Telegraph Herald (or the "TH", as it is known locally), had a daily circulation of nearly 31,000 as of January 27, 2007.[19] Several other important papers and journals also operate in the city, including Tri-State Business Times (monthly business paper), 365ink Magazine (bi-weekly alt/cultural magazine), Julien's Journal (monthly lifestyle magazine), the Dubuque Advertiser (advertisement paper) and the "Tri-States Sports Look" (local sports publication).


AM radio stations

(Strongest signal stations in bold)[20][21][22]

FM radio stations

(Strongest signal stations in bold)[20][21][22]


Dubuque and surrounding areas are in the Cedar Rapids/Waterloo/Dubuque broadcast media market, which is monitored by the A.C. Nielsen Company for audience research data for advertisers. For years, Dubuque had a local TV news station (KFXA/KFXB Fox 28/40) until 2004, when that station became an affiliate of CTN. Currently, the Dubuque-based TV news is covered by KWWL-TV7 (Waterloo), and KCRG-TV9 (Cedar Rapids); both operate news bureaus in the city, and most of the city's major stories are covered by those stations. Since the closing of KFXA/KFXB, KWWL-TV has captured a majority of the local news market in Dubuque.[23]

Dubuque in film

Several movies have been filmed in and around Dubuque, including:


For many years, Dubuque's economy was centered on manufacturing companies such as Deere and Company and Flexsteel Industries. While industry still plays a major role in the city, the economy has diversified a great deal in the last decade. Today, health care, education, tourism, publishing, and financial services are all important sectors of the city's expanding business climate. There are several major companies which are either headquartered in Dubuque, or have a significant presence in the city. Dubuque's largest employers include:[24]

Some other companies with a large presence in the area include: Hormel, Nordstrom, Alliant Energy, Woodward Communications, Swiss Valley Farms, The Metrix Company, and Tschiggfrie Excavating Co.

In recent years, Dubuque's economy has grown very rapidly. In fact, in 2005, the city had the 22nd-highest job growth rate in the nation,[6] far outpacing the rest of Iowa. This ranking placed the city in a level of growth similar to Austin, Texas, and Orlando, Florida, among others. The city created over 10% of the new jobs in Iowa in 2005.[25] Also, the number of jobs in Dubuque County has reached new all-time highs, with over 57,000 people working in non-farming jobs. Many new and existing businesses have announced significant expansion plans, including: Sedgwick CMS, McGraw-Hill Higher Education, Deere and Company, Cottingham & Butler, Quebecor World Inc., Namasco, and many others.


Saint Raphael's Cathedral, the oldest church in Iowa

Dubuque Metropolitan Area

Dubuque is the main town in the Dubuque metropolitan area. It is at the junction of four major highways and two major railroads. Its location along the river has formed the city into a major Midwestern hub. The Dubuque Area is the general area encompassing Dubuque, Iowa. The area includes Dubuque County exclusively, and un- officially, but locally includes: Jackson County, Iowa, Jo Daviess County, Illinois, Grant County, Wisconsin. The official population of the Dubuque County was 93,653 as of the 2010 population estimates.[26] Although, if you include the unofficial counties, the area's population is near 190,000.

  • Platteville - Platteville is the largest city in Grant County, and Southwest Wisconsin. University of Wisconsin-Platteville (UWP),is located there. 10,000 people call Platteville home. Platteville is considered a micropolitan area.
  • Galena - Galena is Midwest - renowned for being a quaint mid-America town with boutiques and hundreds of shops along main street. Some of the shops include furniture shops, several candy shops, multiple Bed and Breakfast establishments, a number of bars, and many gift shops as well. The town sits along the Plum River which runs to Hanover, IL and beyond. The population of Galena ranges between 3,500 and 4,000, making it easily the largest city in Jo Daviess County, Illinois.
  • East Dubuque - East Dubuque is sometimes called the Illinois Bar Capital. The population is only around 2000, but you could find at least 50 bars surrounding and in East Dubuque. East Dubuque is often abbreviated "ED." Most East Dubuquers work in either Galena, or Dubuque.
  • Asbury - At 4,170, Asbury is the second largest city in Dubuque County, surpassing Dyersville, Iowa in 2010. Asbury is a prime and vital suburb of the Dubuque area. Asbury has developed mass commercial districts along the Northwest Arterial, Highway 32 in Dubuque. It is likely that Asbury will continue to grow, and reach the 10,000 population mark in less than 15 years.
    Historical population
    Year Pop. ±%
    1850 3,108 —    
    1860 13,000 +318.3%
    1870 18,434 +41.8%
    1880 25,254 +37.0%
    1890 30,311 +20.0%
    1900 36,297 +19.7%
    1910 38,494 +6.1%
    1920 39,141 +1.7%
    1930 41,679 +6.5%
    1940 43,892 +5.3%
    1950 49,671 +13.2%
    1960 56,606 +14.0%
    1970 62,309 +10.1%
    1980 62,374 +0.1%
    1990 57,538 −7.8%
    2000 57,686 +0.3%
    2010 57,637 −0.1%
    2014 58,436 +1.4%
    Source: "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
    U.S. Decennial Census[27]

2010 census

As of the census[2] of 2010, there were 57,637 people, 23,506 households, and 13,888 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,923.2 inhabitants per square mile (742.6/km2). There were 25,029 housing units at an average density of 835.1 per square mile (322.4/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 91.7% White, 4.0% African American, 0.3% Native American, 1.1% Asian, 0.5% Pacific Islander, 0.6% from other races, and 1.8% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.4% of the population.

There were 23,505 households of which 27.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.6% were married couples living together, 11.1% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.3% had a male householder with no wife present, and 40.9% were non-families. 33.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.28 and the average family size was 2.92.

The median age in the city was 38 years. 21.4% of residents were under the age of 18; 13% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 23.3% were from 25 to 44; 25.9% were from 45 to 64; and 16.5% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 48.4% male and 51.6% female.

2000 census

As of the census[28] of 2000, there were 57,686 people, 22,560 households, and 14,303 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,178.2 people per square mile (841.1/km²). There were 23,819 housing units at an average density of 899.4 per square mile (347.3/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 96.15% White, 1.21% Black or African American, 0.19% Native American, 0.68% Asian, 0.11% Pacific Islander, 0.69% from other races, and 0.96% from two or more races. 1.58% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. There were 22,560 households out of which 30.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.3% were married couples living together, 10.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.6% were non-families. 31.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.37 and the average family size was 2.99.

Age spread: 23.6% under the age of 18, 11.8% from 18 to 24, 26.5% from 25 to 44, 21.6% from 45 to 64, and 16.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 90.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.2 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $36,785, and the median income for a family was $46,564. Males had a median income of $31,543 versus $22,565 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,616. About 5.5% of families and 9.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 9.3% of those under age 18 and 12.5% of those age 65 or over.


A stained glass image of Bishop Mathias Loras.

Since its founding, Dubuque has had, and continues to have, a strong religious tradition. Local settlers established what would become the first Christian church in Iowa, St. Luke's United Methodist Church in early 1833.[29][full citation needed] St. Raphael's, was established later in 1833. The city also played a key role in the expansion of the Roman Catholic Church into the Western United States, as it was the administrative center for Catholics in what is now Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota. Many important Catholic religious leaders have lived in Dubuque, including Father Samuel Mazzuchelli, Bishop Mathias Loras, Clement Smyth, and Mother Mary Frances Clarke. Roman Catholic parishes around the city include Saint Mary's, Sacred Heart, Holy Ghost, and Saint Anthony's.

Since the 1870s the religious character of the area is still dominated by the Roman Catholic Church. In 2010, Catholic adherents who regularly attended services made up about 53% of Dubuque County residents.[30] This contrasts with Iowa as a whole, which was about 17% Catholic in 2010.[31] The city proper is home to 52 different churches (11 Catholic, 40 Protestant, 1 Orthodox), and 1 Jewish synagogue.[32][33] In addition to churches, 5 religious colleges, 4 area convents, and a nearby abbey and monastery add to the city's religious importance. Most of non-Catholic population in the city belongs to various Protestant denominations. Dubuque is home to three theological seminaries: St. Pius X Seminary (Dubuque, Iowa), Minor (College) Seminary for Roman Catholic men discerning a call to ordained priesthood, the University of Dubuque, with the Presbyterian Church USA, and the Wartburg Theological Seminary, with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. These latter two institutions train both lay and ordained ministers for placements in churches nationwide.

Dubuque is the headquarters of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Dubuque, which directly administers 1/3 of Iowa's territory for the church, and is the head of the Ecclesiastical Province of Dubuque, the entire state of Iowa.

Law and government

The City of Dubuque operates on the council-manager form of government, employing a full-time city manager and part-time city council. The city manager, Michael C. Van Milligen, runs the day-to-day operations of the city, and serves as the city's executive leader. The assistant city manager is Cindy Steinhauser,  and is largely credited in spearheading downtown and riverfront revitalization and is currently working on a "Greening Historic Buildings" project as an economic-development strategy and as a way to remember its manufacturing past.[citation needed]

Dubuque has been using its city-owned Community Broadband Network to become a smart city. In 2014, city government officials created four apps to monitor data related to water use, electricity use, transit patterns and waste recycling efforts. The City of Dubuque Sustainability Coordinator, Cori Burbach, stated this was "for educating citizens and implementing behavior changes that they control based on the data these applications provide". However, Dubuque has been reaching the limits of its network and lack sufficient services from giant providers.[34]

Policy and financial decisions are made by the city council, which serves as the city's legislative body. The council comprises[when?] the mayor, Roy D. Buol, who serves[when?] as its chairman, 4 ward-elected members, and 2 at-large members.[citation needed] The city council members are[when?]: Kevin Lynch (Ward 1), Karla Braig (Ward 2), Joyce E. Connors (Ward 3), Lynn Sutton (Ward 4), Ric Jones (at-large), and David Resnick (at-large). The city council meets at 6:30 P.M. on the first and third Mondays of every month in the council chamber of the Historic Federal Building. The city is divided into 4 electoral wards and 21 precincts, as stated in Chapter 17 of the Dubuque City Code.[35][36]

In the Iowa General Assembly, Dubuque is represented[when?] by Senator Pam Jochum (D) in the Iowa Senate, and Representatives Charles Isenhart (D), and Abby Finkenauer (D) in the Iowa House of Representatives.[citation needed]At the federal level, it is within Iowa's 1st congressional district, represented by Rod Blum (R-Dubuque) in the U.S. House of Representatives. Dubuque, and all of Iowa, are represented by U.S. Senators Chuck Grassley (R) and Joni Ernst (R).[citation needed]

City Council of Dubuque, Iowa
Area Name
Mayor Roy D. Buol
At-Large David Resnick
At-Large Ric Jones
First Ward Kevin Lynch
Second Ward Karla Braig
Third Ward Joyce E. Connors
Fourth Ward Lynn Sutton

Political climate

For most of its history, the people in Dubuque have been mostly Democratic. This was due to the large numbers of working-class people and Catholics living in the city. At times, Dubuque was called "The State of Dubuque" because the political climate in Dubuque was very different from the rest of Iowa.

For the most part, Dubuque has maintained itself as a Democratic stronghold, even in recent years.

Notably, however, at the turn of the twentieth century the United States Congress was led by two Dubuque Republicans. Representative David B. Henderson ascended to Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives in 1899, at the same time Senator William B. Allison served as Chairman of the U.S. Senate Republican Conference, an office now known as Senate Majority Leader.


The front of Emmaus Bible College

Public education

Dubuque is served by the Dubuque Community School District, which covers roughly the eastern half of Dubuque County and enrolled 10,735 students in 20 school buildings in 2006. The district has 13 elementary schools, three middle schools, three high schools, and one preschool complex. It is among the fastest-growing school districts in Iowa, adding over 1,000 students in the last five years.

Public high schools in Dubuque include Dubuque Senior High School and Hempstead High School.

Private education

The city has a large number of students who attend private schools. Most[quantify] private schools are run by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Dubuque. The Archdiocese oversees the Holy Family Catholic Schools, which operates 11 schools in the city, including nine early childhood programs, four elementary schools (one of which is a Spanish Immersion program), one middle school, and one high school, Wahlert Catholic High School. As of 2006, Holy Family Catholic Schools enrolled 1,954 students in grades K-12.[citation needed]

Dubuque also has one Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod affiliated elementary school, the Dubuque Lutheran School.[citation needed]

Higher education

Dubuque is home to a large number of higher education institutions. Loras College and Clarke University are two of the three both four-year colleges operated by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Dubuque. Protestant colleges in the city include the University of Dubuque, which is associated with the Presbyterian Church (USA), and Emmaus Bible College, connected with the Plymouth Brethren movement. Three theological seminaries operate in the city, St. Pius X Seminary (Roman Catholic, associated with Loras College), the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary (Presbyterian), and Wartburg Theological Seminary (Lutheran ). Other schools in the area include Northeast Iowa Community College, which operates its largest campus in nearby Peosta, Iowa, and has a satellite campus in Dubuque, Divine Word College Seminary in Epworth, Iowa and Capri Cosmetology College, in Dubuque.

The University of Wisconsin-Platteville is another major university about 20 miles northeast of Dubuque in Platteville, Wisconsin.


Health and medicine

Dubuque is the health care center of a large region covering eastern Iowa, northwestern Illinois, and southwestern Wisconsin. On March 15, 2012, the Commonwealth Fund released its first Scorecard on Local Health System Performance; it ranked Dubuque second in the nation.[citation needed] The city is home to two major hospitals that, together, have 421 beds. Mercy Medical Center - Dubuque is the largest hospital in the city with 263 beds,[37] and one of only three in Iowa to achieve "Magnet Hospital" status. Magnet Hospitals must meet and maintain strict standards, deeming them some of the best medical facilities in the country.[38] Mercy specializes in various cardiac-related treatments, among other things and is affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church.[citation needed]

Dubuque's other hospital is The Finley Hospital, which is a member of UnityPoint Health's network of hospitals. Finley is JCAHO accredited, and as of 2007 had 158 beds.[39] It is unofficially Dubuque's "cancer hospital," as it has significant oncology-related facilities, including the Wendt Regional Cancer Center.[40] The hospital campus has expanded in recent years, with the construction of several new buildings.

Among other health care facilities, the city is home to two major outpatient clinics. Medical Associates Clinic is the oldest multi-specialty group practice clinic in Iowa, and currently operates two major outpatient clinics in Dubuque, its "East" and "West" campuses. It is affiliated with Mercy Medical Center - Dubuque, and also operates its own HMO, Medical Associates Health Plans.[41] Affiliated with the Finley Hospital is Dubuque Internal Medicine, which as of 2007 was Iowa's largest internal medicine group practice clinic.[42]



Dubuque is served by 4 U.S. Highways (20, 151, 61, 52) and 2 state highways (3, 32). Highway 20, is the city's busiest east-west thoroughfare, connecting to Rockford (and I-39/I-90) and Chicago, Illinois to the east, over the Julien Dubuque Bridge. In the west, it connects to Waterloo, Iowa. Highways 151, 61, and 52 all run north-south through the city, with a shared expressway between the three for part of the route. Highways 61 and 52 both connect Dubuque with the Twin Cities (Minnesota) to the north, with 61 connecting to Davenport, Iowa (and I-74/I-80), and 52 connecting to Clinton, Iowa via U.S. Route 67 to the south. Highway 151 connects Dubuque with Madison, Wisconsin (and I-39/I-90/I-94) (via the Dubuque-Wisconsin Bridge) to the northeast and Cedar Rapids, Iowa to the southwest. Dubuque has 4-lane, divided highway connections with Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Madison, and Waterloo.

Iowa State Highway 3 begins in Dubuque along a shared route with Highway 52, and connects the city with central and western Iowa. Iowa State Highway 32, locally known as the "Northwest Arterial," acts as a beltway for parts of the North End and West Side. Eventually, this 4-lane highway will be extended southeast, to connect with highways 151 & 61 near Key West, Iowa and the Dubuque Regional Airport and will be called the "Southwest Arterial."[citation needed]


The Dubuque Regional Airport

Dubuque and its region are served by the general-aviation Dubuque Regional Airport (IATA: DBQICAO: KDBQ). The airport currently has one carrier, Envoy Air, (a division of American Airlines) which operates 3 non-stop jet flights daily to Chicago O'Hare International Airport. Northwest Airlines regional partner Mesaba operating under Northwest Airlink used to have daily service to Dubuque. Northwest operated twice daily flights to and from Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport (IATA: MSPICAO: KMSP) using Saab 340 aircraft.[43] These flights began June 2008 and ended on August 31, 2009. Northwest Airlines once offered service to Dubuque prior to 9/11.

The airport's operator, the City of Dubuque, continues[when?] to court additional carriers to add service to the airport.[citation needed] The Dubuque Regional Airport has reported steadily increasing passenger numbers over the years, and, up until recently[when?], had service from 3 different carriers prior to 9/11. In early November 2007, it was announced that October 2007 was the best month ever for American Eagle airline at the Dubuque Regional Airport, according to Robert Grierson, Dubuque Regional Airport manager: "We had 4,510 total revenue passenger enplanements; that is a record for American Eagle in Dubuque. American Eagle averaged a 79.82 percent enplanement load factor. Load factors are determined by how many revenue passengers were on the plane versus how many seats are available."[citation needed]

Currently, a $23 million new terminal is being built to modernize and expand the airport.[44] Improvements include a larger terminal, new access road, and expanded aviation parking.[45] The new terminal at the Dubuque Regional Airport is expected to be opening in 2016.

Mass transit

In Dubuque, public transportation is provided by the city transit division The Jule. The Jule operates multiple daytime bus routes, late night Friday and Saturday bus routes and Minibus service, summer trolleys, and on-demand paratransit Minibus service throughout the city. The routes are based out of one or more of the three transfer locations and run in 30-minute loops. These loops serve neighborhoods, shopping areas, medical offices, and industrial parks and provide connections to other areas of the city with the 15-minute cross-town Express route. The system's 3 major transfer stations are: Downtown Intermodal (9th & Elm St), Midtown (North Grandview & University Avenues), and the West End (Kennedy Circle/John F. Kennedy Road).[citation needed]

Sister cities

Dubuque is a sister city with the following:

Notable people

See also


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External links

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