GREENSBORO, N.C. (WGHP) — The area of east Greensboro hit by a tornado in 2018 is starting to see positive long-term changes.

They’re changes Kenley Harris never thought he would see.

“We heard that boom, and two trees fell on the house on one side, and I had two that fell across the driveway,” Harris said.

The tornado destroyed his home on Llano Court on April 15. He was worried the lot where his home stood would remain empty after the devastation.

Now, wind chimes make music on the new porch of his home crews from Habitat for Humanity built.

The organization teamed up with the city to demolish and rebuild five homes damaged in the storm.

“The tornado was a rude awakening, especially for homeowners,” Alvin Cross said. “It was a mess, and a lot of people just got scared and never came back.”

The people who stayed are changing east Greensboro in a way Cross hasn’t seen in the 24 years he’s lived along Lansdown Avenue.

“I’ve never seen them take care of their property like they are now,” Cross said.

Two Airbnbs popped up on the street.

Councilmember Sharon Hightower is taking notice of what’s happening in her district.

“I ride through this area frequently, and lawns are manicured. Trash is picked up. It’s about how much people care about the area they live in. They care about their next-door neighbor,” Hightower said.

She and other city staff members have counted 500 homes purchased in their area since 2018.

She believes it will take continued investment in the people living there and the businesses they run to keep the growth going.

Greensboro city council leaders are expected to vote Tuesday night on giving $1.5 million to Habitat for Humanity to build 50 homes in east Greensboro.