Welcome, safety. Now the thrill is gone.
  • Welcome, safety. Now the thrill is gone.
Well, NE Couch Street. It's been a good run. You've put up a fighting chance, you really have. After the city spent $17.8 million to reshape you and East Burnside, I would ride down you every day and, most days, you trickster you, I would almost get hit by a car. Even after all the "improvements," bike advocates said you weren't "ready to ride" but I rode you anyway, relishing the two rows of parking that squished me nearer to rumbling cars, the sweeping curves onto the Burnside Bridge whose sharp turns I navigated (for a few golden weeks) with the breathtaking fear of slipping on the new road and tumbling into traffic. But most especially, I craved the constant danger of getting right-hooked at the scintillatingly dangerous Couch and Grand intersection. But now the spark is gone. Responding to our screeching, the city has painted a bike box there. Today's ride downtown was... calm. Mundane. Sigh. At least I'll always have the new streetcar tracks.