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Hampton Roads area Chesapeake - Hampton - Newport News - Norfolk - Portsmouth - Suffolk - Virginia Beach
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Old 08-03-2017, 01:32 PM
 
57 posts, read 23,483 times
Reputation: 65

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We moved to Hampton Roads in the spring of 2011 for a job offer. The job worked out great. Life in Hampton Roads overall, though, is a mixed bag.

If you're thinking about relocating here, this is what I've observed...

PROS
Lots of good safe neighborhoods with no crime, if you're willing to spend a big chunk of income on housing
Police will go by you as you speed and they won't much care, as long as you're not being ridiculous
Some really good small local businesses if you take the time to find them
Public resources like parks and libraries are maintained pretty well -- you can always find something to do
Good sushi
Grocery stores have produce from local farms
Some school districts are great, but again you will pay a lot of money for it
You can make it to the Outer Banks in about two hours (they have better beaches)
We have Aldi and a Trader Joe's
There's a pretty vibrant artist community here
Lots of charities doing good work if you want to volunteer

CONS
Traffic is terrible -- it suffers from both congestion/infrastructure as well as bad drivers. I've been rear-ended three times in the same car.
People are pushy in public
Healthcare is very weak -- not the best doctors, so you'll end up treating yourself half the time
It's very difficult to find a good church
There is constantly new construction with condos, shopping malls, etc being fit into tighter spaces
The weather changes so rapidly that forecasts are unreliable
The VB boardwalk is overrated and unsafe at night

Overall, this area is safe and pleasant enough, as long as you have a high income, but I would not want to live here forever.

I hope this helps!
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Old 08-03-2017, 02:16 PM
 
885 posts, read 1,198,645 times
Reputation: 575
Could you tell us what area you moved here from? I think that's pretty important when giving a list of pros and cons like this because of varying perspectives. For example, I moved here from northern VA, so I don't think traffic here is bad at all! Similarly, the constant new construction doesn't bother me because, again, it's worse in NOVA. The Trader Joe's isn't a "pro" to me because it takes me 20+ minutes to get to the one at Hilltop, whereas they were scattered around NOVA, so one was usually closer/more convenient to my home or office.

I also wonder where you're comparing to with your comment on healthcare here being weak. I've actually had the opposite experience. I thought for sure that NOVA/the DC area would have all amazing doctors, but I've found my family has gotten better care here in Virginia Beach, which was quite a pleasant surprise.

I love your weather comment. I have more than once checked an hour-by-hour forecast that stated 0% precipitation in my area WHILE IT WAS CURRENTLY POURING OUT! So I agree with you there

I've never been to the Outer Banks, but I agree the boardwalk area is just so-so. If I want to take my kids to the beach, we head to Croatan or Sandbridge. Almost 3 years here and I have yet to check out Chick's Beach or First Landing, but, if you like beaches, VB definitely has more to offer than just the main oceanfront area.
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Old 08-03-2017, 02:28 PM
 
57 posts, read 23,483 times
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I've lived in Ohio, North Carolina, Seattle, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, and Richmond. Each of those places I lived for at least six months or longer.
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Old 08-03-2017, 06:51 PM
 
926 posts, read 529,042 times
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Traffic isn't bad in all of Hampton Roads. We don't have too much of a problem with it on the peninsula.

The sushi here is excellent. I've lived in Michigan and California and this area, by far, has both the best Sushi and Mexican restaurants.

The police were MUCH more lenient in Michigan. I lived there for about 2 years and never saw a single car pulled over. I used to see at least 2 every single morning on my way into work. Also rarely saw anyone pulled over in California.

People are definitely pushy, but I find that only to be behind the wheel of a vehicle. Outside of a vehicle, people are pretty nice for the most part. People were straight rude in Michigan, but courteous in a vehicle. Go figure.

You've lived in Minneapolis and North Carolina though. Both of those places are much, much friendlier places.

A lot of us that grew up here complain, but life in Hampton Roads isn't that bad. That is unless you commute across any bridge. Then your life is a living hell.
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Old 08-04-2017, 11:31 AM
 
Location: Charleston, SC
2,353 posts, read 2,269,551 times
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Miss Thumb,
Thank you for your review. What part of Tidewater do you live in ? Natives of the area call it Tidewater, Va.
I used to go to the Outer Banks in 45 minutes from where I lived.......
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Old 08-04-2017, 11:54 AM
 
57 posts, read 23,483 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver-Fox View Post
Miss Thumb,
Thank you for your review. What part of Tidewater do you live in ? Natives of the area call it Tidewater, Va.
I used to go to the Outer Banks in 45 minutes from where I lived.......
We've lived in various places over the years. Now we're in Great Bridge.
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Old 08-04-2017, 12:37 PM
 
926 posts, read 529,042 times
Reputation: 1475
Quote:
Originally Posted by Silver-Fox View Post
Miss Thumb,
Thank you for your review. What part of Tidewater do you live in ? Natives of the area call it Tidewater, Va.
I used to go to the Outer Banks in 45 minutes from where I lived.......
We used to call it Tidewater back in the early 90's. I haven't heard that term used since

It's like paraguas y sombrillas in Spanish. Older people use "tidewater", younger people use "Hampton Roads."
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Old 08-04-2017, 07:02 PM
 
136 posts, read 66,667 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lockdev View Post
We used to call it Tidewater back in the early 90's. I haven't heard that term used since

It's like paraguas y sombrillas in Spanish. Older people use "tidewater", younger people use "Hampton Roads."
Agreed. I'm in my early-30s. Most people I know referred to the area as Hampton Roads. Tidewater is going the way of the dinosaur.
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Old 08-04-2017, 09:16 PM
 
680 posts, read 495,826 times
Reputation: 782
Tell that to TCC (and the scores of other businesses and institutions with Tidewater in their name).
Hampton Roads is an inelegant name and the region has only gone by that for a very brief time. IIt wouldn't surprise me if it is ditched, IMO the area should just be referred to as Norfolk.
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Old 08-05-2017, 12:46 AM
 
136 posts, read 66,667 times
Reputation: 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by spencer114 View Post
Tell that to TCC (and the scores of other businesses and institutions with Tidewater in their name).
Hampton Roads is an inelegant name and the region has only gone by that for a very brief time. IIt wouldn't surprise me if it is ditched, IMO the area should just be referred to as Norfolk.
Actually no. Not even close. Maybe the name is a little "inelegant", but Hampton Roads has been the moniker for the area for a VERY long time. The name actually goes back to the 18th century.

Tidewater was the favored name for the area for a while, especially in the mid-20th century or so. But the momentum started to swing back to Hampton Roads in the 70s. Sure, you cited Tidewater Community College (founded 1968). But what about entities created over the last 30 years or so? The Hampton Roads Admirals? And the Gulls before them? What about Hampton Roads Transit? The Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel? I can keep going, but you get the picture.

Also, in 1983, the postmark for the area from the US Postal Service was officially changed from Tidewater, Virginia to Hampton Roads, Virginia. Just about anyone under 40 will refer to the area as Hampton Roads. Many kids under the age of 25 or so haven't even heard of the Tidewater monicker (outside of the school). There may be attempts in the future to change the branding (who remembers the short-lived effort to make "Coastal Virginia" a thing?). The point is, the area is Hampton Roads... not Tidewater. It's pretty silly to argue otherwise.
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