I fully agree with you; Friend-zone? Give me a break. It’s just a false comfort made to cover up the real reason a girl doesn’t like you.
I really don't think that if it turns out she doesn't like you in that way, she wouldn't want to be friends with you any longer. You said you were good friends, right? A good friend would understand your feelings and continue to want to be in a relationship with you, even if it is not an intimate one.
What the hell? If you want to be in an intimate relationship with her you wouldn't want a relationship at all? That's just stupid.
I think you should at least ask her out. Even if she doesn't return your feelings, you will still be friends, yes? A friendship is better than having nothing at all, and sometimes can be more rewarding.