In the early 1990s, the rock-strewn roadways, unstable rail lines and obsolete telephone network crisscrossing Albania represented the remnants of the marked improvements that were made after World War II. Enver Hoxha's xenophobia and lust for control had kept Albania isolated, however, as the communications revolution transformed the wider world into a global village. Even internal travel amounted to something of a luxury for many Albanians during communism's ascendancy.
[edit] Highways
SH 2 Highway (Tirana–Durrës).

There is a four lane highway connecting the city of Durrës with Tirana and the city of Durrës with the city of Lushnje. Albania is partaking in the construction of what it sees as three major corridors of transportation.

The major priority as of present is the full completion of the four lane Durrës-Pristina highway which will link Kosovo with Albania's Adriatic coast. The portion of the highway which links Albania's north east border with Kosovo was completed in June 2009,[65] as a result, cutting the time it takes to get from Kosovo to Durrës from six hours to two and a half. Indeed the roads in northwestern Albania remain in poor condition as of summer 2009. It takes approximately 1h 30' to drive the 35 km (22 mi) from the border of Montenegro to Shkodër.[citation needed]

There has been much discussion, debate, and interest in the 170 km (106 mi) Durrës–Kukës–Morinë Highway Albanian highway to Kosovo, which is intended to create a new, super-fast connection between Durrës on the Adriatic coast to Morinë at the border of Kosovo. The current drive time between Kukës and Durrës is now 2 hours. The whole will be around 250 km (155 mi), when completed to Pristina. The objective for constructing the road, according to the transport ministry, is to reduce transport costs and accidents, and improve traffic flow. It is the biggest, most expensive infrastructure project ever undertaken in Albania. The cost of the highway appears to have breached EUR800 million, although the exact cost for the total highway has yet to be confirmed by the government. Currently there is a display in Tirana's centre on Bvld Dëshmorët e Kombit.

The second priority is the construction of European corridor 8 linking Albania with the Republic of Macedonia and Bulgaria.

The third priority for the government is the construction of the north-south axis of the country; it is sometimes referred to as the Adriatic–Ionian motorway as it is part of a larger regional highway connecting Croatia with Greece along the Adriatic and Ionian coasts.

By the end of the decade it is expected that the majority of the sections of these three corridors will have been built.[citation needed] When all three corridors are completed Albania will have an estimated 759 kilometers of highway linking it with its neighbors.
[edit] Aviation
Tirana International Airport Nënë Tereza

The civil air transport in Albania marked its beginnings in November 1924, when the Republic of Albania signed a Governmental Agreement with German Air Company Lufthansa. On the basis of a ten-year concession agreement, the Albanian Airlines with the name Adria Aero Lloyd Company was established.[citation needed] In the spring of 1925, the first domestic flights from Tirana to Shkoder and Vlora began.[citation needed]

In August 1927, the office of Civil Aviation of Air Traffic Ministry of Italy purchased Adria Aero Lloyd. The company, now in Italian hands, expanded its flights to other cities, such as Elbasan, Korça, Kukësi, Peshkopia and Gjirokastra, and opened up international lines to Rome, Milan, Thessaloniki, Sofia, Belgrade, and Podgorica.

The construction of a more modern airport construction in present Lapraka started in 1934 and was completed by the end of 1935. This new airport, which was later officially named "Airport of Tirana", was constructed in conformity with optimal technological parameters of that time, with reinforced concrete runway of 1200 400 m (1,312.34 ft), and complemented with technical equipment and appropriate buildings.

During 1955–1957, the Rinasi Airport was constructed for military purposes. Later, its administration was shifted to the Ministry of Transport. On 25 January 1957 the State-owned Enterprise of International Air Transport (Albtransport) established its headquarters in Tirana. Aeroflot, Jat, Malev, Tarom and Interflug were the air companies that started to have flights with Albania until 1960.

During 1960–1978, several airlines ceased to operate in Albania due to the impact of the politics, resulting to a decrease of influx of flights and passengers. In 1977 Albania's government signed an agreement with Greece to open the country's first air links with non-communist Europe. As a result, Olympic Airways was the first non-communist airline to commercially fly into Albania after WWII. By 1991 Albania had air links with many major European cities, including Paris, Rome, Zürich, Vienna and Budapest, but no regular domestic air service.

A French-Albanian joint venture Ada Air, was launched in Albania's as the first private airline, in 1991. The company offered flights in a thirty-six-passenger airplane four days each week between Tirana and Bari, Italy and a charter service for domestic and international destinations.

From 1989 to 1991, because of political changes in the Eastern European countries, Albania adhered to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), opened its air space to international flights, and had its duties of Air Traffic Control defined. As premises of these developments, conditions were created to separate the activities of air traffic control from Albtransport. Instead, the National Agency of Air Traffic (NATA) was established as an independent enterprise. In addition, during these years, governmental agreements of civil air transport were established with countries such as Bulgaria, Germany, Slovenia, Italy, Russia, Austria, the UK and Macedonia. The Directory General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) was established on 3 February 1991, to cope with the development required by the time.

As of 2007 Albania has one international airport: Tirana International Airport Nënë Tereza. The airport is linked to 29 destinations by 14 airlines. It has seen a dramatic rise in terms of passenger numbers and aircraft movements since the early 1990s. The data for 2009 is 1.3 million passengers served and an average of 44 landings and takeoffs per day.
Train on the Durrës to Tiranë railway line
[edit] Railways
Main articles: Rail transport in Albania and Hekurudha Shqiptarë

The railway system was extensively promoted by the totalitarian regime of Enver Hoxha, during which time the use of private transport was effectively prohibited. Since the collapse of the former regime, there has been a considerable increase in car ownership and bus usage. Whilst some of the country's roads are still in a very poor condition, there have been other developments (such as the construction of a motorway between Tirana and Durrës) which have taken much traffic away from the railways.

The railways in Albania are administered by the national railway company Hekurudha Shqiptare (HSH) (which means Albanian Railways). It operates a 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in) gauge (standard gauge) rail system in Albania. All trains are hauled by Czech-built ČKD diesel-electric locomotives.