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Norfolk to Williamsburg -Bridge Crossing Anxiety!

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New York
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Norfolk to Williamsburg -Bridge Crossing Anxiety!

Help! We're flying into Norfolk, picking up rental car to drive for a week in Williamsburg area. It looks like we have to traverse a bridge. Given that I'm not a great lover of bridges, is one of the bridge crossings any shorter or less inclined up and down? Your suggestions most appreciated. (I'm fine in tunnels).

Williamsburg...
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1. Re: Norfolk to Williamsburg -Bridge Crossing Anxiety!

Both of the Bridge-Tunnels are pretty similar, and if tunnels don't bother you, I think either one will be fine - just pick the one that is the most convenient for where you're going. From ORF, that's usually the HRBT, which is 3.5 miles long including the tunnel, but if the traffic there is really backed up, you can always swing over to the Monitor-Merrimac, 4.6 miles long including the tunnel.

If you think getting a look at it might help, you can google HRBT and Monitor-Merrimac to find some descriptions and pictures.

Virginia Beach...
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2. Re: Norfolk to Williamsburg -Bridge Crossing Anxiety!

The HRBT bridge portion is not high at all and there are no inclines. As Zoey said, the MM bridge is a bit longer, also not high but I think a short section has an incline...still not very high though. If your flight arrives near rush hour, consider waiting until it's over by enjoying dinner in Norfolk. You can also get a traffic status of area bridges/tunnels by tuning to AM610 on your rental car radio, you will be heading westbound on I64 to Williamsburg. Hope this helps.

us
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3. Re: Norfolk to Williamsburg -Bridge Crossing Anxiety!

I love bridges!!

No fear though - the one you cross is a baby - and does include a tunnel. It's a flat bridge (HRBT) or a small incline (MM)

Probably too late now, for future, if you can't flu into PHF try RIC - neither has bridge, which do get backed up,

I hate to say - the HRBT gets backed up a lot, especially on week-ends - so check the traffic reports as soon as you are leaving the rental car agency - ask them if you should take the HRBT or MM - they can check the current traffic and advise accordingly.

Chesapeake, VA
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4. Re: Norfolk to Williamsburg -Bridge Crossing Anxiety!

The HRBT is indeed more convenient, but the M&M feels wider and roomier to me.

New York
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5. Re: Norfolk to Williamsburg -Bridge Crossing Anxiety!

Thank you all for your suggestions. I am encouraged that the two bridges are both relatively level rather than steep inclines. I will keep the traffic situation in mind. Yes, I've flown in to RIC in past, and haven't had the "bridge" issue. I'll check out Google satellite images too!

us
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6. Re: Norfolk to Williamsburg -Bridge Crossing Anxiety!

Be sure to check the traffic conditions - I just found out that at home over the week-end the back-ups were nightmarish. All bridges and tunnels had issues - hours delay on the HRBT, some of the worst jams in years. The CBBT was hit, HRBT had water issues, MM was backed up, I-64 had lanes closed. Apparently it was quite a mess.

RIC or PHF (preferred if your market can get you here) for anyone trying to determine which airport to use....

Southern Shores...
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7. Re: Norfolk to Williamsburg -Bridge Crossing Anxiety!

Just my $0.02 since I have to cross both often: I would recommend 664 the Monitor-Merrimac over the HRBT.

Yes, the HRBT is the most direct, but it also ALWAYS has a backup. Someone can sneeze in their car and that bridge-tunnel will backup as a result.

The MM has it's backup moments but it's almost always the smoother option. And it's only 10-15 mins. longer for your trip.

NOTE: You didn't mention what time your flight landed, but you want to be nowhere near the HRBT between 7-9 a.m. and 3-6 p.m. (yes, rush hour starts that early in the afternoon b/c one of the local military bases lets out).

Virginia Beach...
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8. Re: Norfolk to Williamsburg -Bridge Crossing Anxiety!

As you can tell from the many posts, HRBT is not a local favorite due to potential traffic problems. If your issue is primarily high bridges (even though I'm sure you don't want to be stuck in traffic either), the HRBT may be your best route. In order to get from Norfolk airport to MMBT you have to either cross what is called the "High Level Bridge" on I64E on the way to I664, or take the Midtown Tunnel between Norfolk and Portsmouth, Route 58 to Route 164, (that's one sixty four not I (eye) sixty four) to I664. There is no bridge on the Norfolk side of the Midtown Tunnel but an interstate type bridge on the Portsmouth side that is a bit high and the total legnth is about 1/2 mile or more. I don't think you would enjoy these options based on your original post. Good luck and let us know if you have more questions.

Ranson, West...
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9. Re: Norfolk to Williamsburg -Bridge Crossing Anxiety!

Hi Primavera,

I also prefer MM over the HRBT- it feel wider to me, cleaner, brighter, newer. (But that may be my preference simply because my fear is the tunnel part, rather than the bridge part.) HRBT usually does have more chances of a backup, too. But even with those negatives, I usually still choose to frequent the HRBT simply for convenience sake- MM tacks on extra miles, as it kind of shoots you out & around, rather than straight thru your main travel path if you are coming from Norfolk or VA Beach.

New York
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10. Re: Norfolk to Williamsburg -Bridge Crossing Anxiety!

Well, we're finally off to Norfolk on Tuesday. Our flight arrives at 2:10 PM so I'm hoping we'll have picked up our rental car and on our way to Williamsburg by 3 PM. From everyone's input, it looks like we'll be hitting rush hour time. Assuming there's no traffic advisory, should we still opt for Hampton Roads Bridge route?

My thanks to everyone who provided feedback about the bridge crossing options. If there's not a steep incline/decline I should be OK on either!