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    This originally appeared in the 2019 Best of Louisville issue of Louisville Magazine.

    By Joey Harrison

    I love our cockeyed streets that change names multiple times. A few that come to mind are Winkler Avenue -> Taylor Boulevard -> New Cut Road -> West Manslick Road -> Mt. Holly Road; Grinstead Drive -> Winter Avenue -> Oak Street -> Virginia Avenue -> Hale Avenue; and Wilson Avenue -> Cane Run Road -> Greenbelt Highway -> Gene Snyder Freeway.

    We also have streets that have suffered a midsection removal. Consider the two Crittenden Drives. Perhaps they were connected at some time. Now they have separate lives and actually parallel each other for a short stretch. Similarly, there are two East Brandeis avenues. Confounding to me are the streets that make sharp 90-degree turns and keep their names. Examples of that are Blevins Gap Road (where it hits Stone Street) and Harrison Lane.

    And now we come to something truly twisted. I’m talking about Louisville’s two twistiest streets: Watterson Trail and Belmar Drive. Of the two, Watterson Trail beats Belmar in length, but Belmar picks up points for changing names (to Trevilian Way). But wait! Watterson Trail changes names too (to Outer Loop), and it also has a twin Watterson Trail, running parallel to it near Ruckriegel Parkway, so maybe it bests Belmar for most peculiarities.

    On the topic of alleys, I have to mention this little quirk that folks in the Highlands should be familiar with. Speed Avenue has a midcourse transformation from street to alley and, one block later, back to street again.

    Are Louisville’s streets a confusing mess? Wrong adjective! They’re a charming mess.

    This originally appeared in the 2019 Best of Louisville issue of Louisville Magazine. Read more.

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