Sixth Avenue through Midtown is among the city's most congested, nightmarish streets for cyclists. A bike lane there hasn't been officially sanctioned, but why slog through years of bureaucratic red tape and fiery community board meetings when you can just paint the damn thing yourself? So on Saturday, that's exactly what one cycling advocacy group did.

The members of Right of Way are best known for their controversial eerie memorials, dedicated to cyclists and pedestrians killed by motorists in which "no criminality was suspected." Now, following a horrific incident last month in which a cab severed a tourist's leg after getting in an altercation with a cyclist, a few enterprising activists are employing their paint in a new way: Vigilante bike lanes.

The group's goal is to lay makeshift bike lanes along 6th Avenue between 42nd Street and Central Park, an objective it came close to achieving on Saturday but for the passing lights of a patrol car on 46th Street and, of course, the night's sudden and torrential downpour. Right of Way co-founder Keegan Stephan told us today that he and his fellow lane-makers plan to finish up the project sometime soon, though he said they have no immediate plans to paint lanes anywhere else just yet. Asked whether he thought adding the lanes to an otherwise hazardous roadway would create a false sense of security for cyclists, Stephan said no.

A CitiBiker has to leave the "bike lane" thanks to truck blockage (Jen Chung / Gothamist)

"It's really just bringing out the law of the road that already exists," he said, noting that cyclist do, in fact, consistently have the right of way on all city streets. "It's been proven time and time again that if you install a bike lane, it lowers the number of crashes."

He added that he has yet to hear of any repercussions for the impromptu lanes. Department of Transportation spokesman Seth Solomonow told the Times on Sunday that "the agency would consider any proposal for additional lanes supported by the local community board." (We asked the agency whether it had plans to remove the lanes, and were told that the DOT "will inspect and take any appropriate action.")

This isn't the first time the streets have been given an unsanctioned makeover: In 2009, a pair of self-proclaimed "self-hating Jewish hipsters" recreated a Bedford Avenue bike lane removed by the city with no explanation.

For now, Stephan said Right of Way will "continue to pursue whatever important street improvements arise."

"Congestion in New York City is not just annoying," he said. "It's deadly—and can leave you without a leg.“