Seen from historic perspective, the growth of Hampton Roads can be attributed to the harbor. The presence of this harbor offers both benefit and obstacle: It plays a main role in being a transportation conduit and it poses challenges for land-based commerce and travel. These challenges, however, were finally overcome over time. As the region becomes urbanize over time, transportation challenges also increase. Additional traffic needs also rise up.
Transportation challenges continue of being present in the 21st century with the existence of conflicts between land-based travel and traffic on waterways. The preexisting infrastructure planning can be found at site, it has been aged significantly and there was no sufficient funding that can be allocated to either repair or replace said infrastructure. Both the Kings Highway in Suffolk and the Jordan Bridge near the Chesapeake were built in the 1920s and were now closed, serving themselves as examples of how transportation infrastructure in Hampton Roads needs upgrading. The HRTA (Hampton Roads Transportation Authority) was founded in 2007. It brought with it controversial additional taxes which were meant to support funding for transportation projects. Said projects include the James River Bridge, Monitor-Merrimac Bridge Tunnel, and the Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel, all of which were thought to be too costly.
Newport News’ Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport and Norfolk’s Norfolk International Airport serve passengers coming from Hampton Roads. The former is the Virginia Peninsula’s primary airport. Said Airport saw growth in 2011, turning it into one of the country’s fastest growing airports. By 2012, however, the Airport suffered from massive declines in passenger service, leading to layoffs of many of its staff. The Norfolk International Airport houses seven airlines providing services to 25 destinations nonstop. The Hampton Roads Executive Airport is the 3rd busiest General Aviation airport in the state of Virginia. The Chesapeake Regional Airport provides similar services as the previous.
Northeast Regional trains to Norfolk, Williamsburg, and Newport News stations are provided by Amtrak. The lines run to the west toward Richmond and to the north toward Washington D.C. as well as other cities north of Boston. Norfolk and Newport News stations are connected by buses and the two stations are also connected to Virginia Beach. Greyhound Lines provides intercity bus service. Stations are located in Norfolk, Hampton, and Newport News. Within Hampton Roads, transportation is provided by Hampton Roads Transit. Williamsburg Area Transit Authority operates local routes to Williamsburg, James City, as well as to upper York County.