Lucy's Place in Barrie officially opened today.

The old motel on Essa Road was transformed into affordable housing to give those in need a fresh start in life.

"It's a very emotional day on so many levels," says the David Busby Centre's Sara Peddle. "We still have so much more to go."

Nearly 700 people are living on the streets in Simcoe County, and more than 3,000 are on the affordable housing waitlist.

Lucy's Place is just one step in a direction that Peddle hopes the County continues to move toward. "Homelessness is real, and these are real human beings, and they are passing away on our streets."

The converted motel offers more than just housing to those suffering from chronic homelessness. It also provides around-the-clock support to help break the cycle.

Lucy's Place is an 18-unit housing complex that was made possible with funding from multiple levels of government and County funds.

"Lucy's Place represents hope," declared Barrie Mayor Jeff Lehman.

Officials from Redwood Park Communities, the David Busby Centre, the City of Barrie and the County of Simcoe celebrated the grand opening and the unique collaboration that has resulted in a safe, supportive environment.

"Every person we meet has value and has a right to a safe and affordable home," Sara Peddle stated.