New and improved Giem Bridge
Replacing Madison County’s most deficient bridge
Construction on the Giem Bridge was completed Sept. 24 and is expected to be operating by next week.
The former 125-year-old steel bridge on Silver Bow Land in Twin Bridges was listed as Madison County’s most deficient bridge in a 2018 bridge evaluation. It was replaced with a concrete bridge with adequate lane widths and a supporting capacity of over seven tons for safe two-way traffic.
“When they started to take it apart, we really got to see how bad it was,” Madison County Commissioner Ron Nye said.
The Giem Bridge is the primary access to an area serving agricultural, recreational and residential land users. It crosses the Beaverhead River on Silver Bow Lane, connecting the dirt Bench Road to Montana Highway 41. The former Giem Bridge was unsafe or impossible to cross, which meant the farms and ranches on Bench Road had to either backtrack to Twin Bridges or take the slower route on a dirt road to get their products to markets in the region via United States Highway 15.
The Giem Bridge now offers more efficient travel for the businesses along Bench Road. Construction began in August and the bridge was finished under budget and ahead of schedule, according to Nye. A grant from Treasure State Endowment Program split the nearly $1 million project with Madison County. Sletten Construction and Tom Miller Construction were contracted to construct the new Giem Bridge.