NEW BERN, N.C. (WNCT) — There are 84 families in New Bern now enjoying their new homes. A ribbon-cutting ceremony that featured Congressman Greg Murphy was held Thursday to mark the opening of Carolina Avenue Apartments.

The new complex comes as the need for affordable housing is pressing the community following Hurricane Florence in 2018. Murphy was part of a group of city officials and others who took part in the ribbon-cutting ceremony. They joined the ones who were getting their new homes in expressing happiness at the big day.

“I like the idea that I have two bedrooms…” Cheryl Reed said. “We were in the shelter at Trent Park School …”

After being left without a home after Hurricane Florence, Reed finally got to move into her home in January. Before being able to do that, she had to move several times.

“I went over to the housing authority, and I made my application. And they called me in January, that January,” Reed said.

Reed and several others like Kelvin McCraven lived at the Trent Court Complex. It was destroyed during Florence. Once they could apply for the new housing, they wasted no time.

“I was first and got the application, first one and bring it back. The first one to get approved,” McCraven said.

McCraven added that after losing his apartment to Florence, he had no permanent place to live. Now, he and Reed both share the same feeling.

“You can always go home and turn that key and go in your own house. And for me to get that apartment right there. I thank God for it,” McCraven said.

“I wish to be here until it’s not my time to be here, this is wonderful,” Reed said.

Complex developers said the project has been primarily funded by the state’s low-income tax credit, specifically helping low-income families.

“So these apartments will remain affordable for a minimum of 30 years, and it would be our goal that they are perpetual,” said Kathy Stillwell, Mosaic Development Group executive director.

Murphy gave a short speech in which he promised to continue to be a champion for affordable housing.