Old Mandeville Woods
Between Labarre and Preval Streets
West of Soult St
Kevin Lilly of Showcase Properties (ShowcaseProp.com) is the agent for lots 5B, 8A, 12B and 14B. Contact him at 985-869-8690 and at kevinlilly@showcaseprop.com.

Old Mandeville Woods
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History, Concepts,
Subdivision Plat,
Available Lots

Typical Lot Layouts
Wildlife Easement Landscaping


Covenant Deeds

History, Concepts, Subdivision Plat, and Available Lots

Looking north at Labarre Street Entrance down Old Mandeville Lane in 2004
A view of trees, not lawns!

The same view in 2008
A view of trees, not lawns!

Old Mandeville Woods (OMW) was created out of 20 acres in an existing forest of 32 acres owned by Ron Stoessell on the outskirts of Mandeville. Nearly a century earlier, the land had been subdivided for development into small lots. However, that development never took place, and the land was sold into the Prieto family and eventually inherited by Ron. As subdivisions proliferated in the area, he was approached by developers and builders to clear-cut the forest and use the "paper subdivision lots" as justification for "high density" houses.

However, he wanted to see the land developed for homesites that blended within the woods. His vision was of homesites where each homeowner could modify the existing forest to create their individual concept of a woodland garden, i.e., Designer Woods. Each home would be surrounded by a lawn that would grade into lush green woods within each lot.

He was joined in that vision by his wife Londi Moore. Londi was a residential builder and partner with Guy Songy in Chateau Nouveau.

She is as passionate about nature and all living creatures as she is about building her homes. Her homes are expressions of her inspiration to dream and create.
Lot 6B Old Mandeville Woods

The concept of homes nestled within Designer Woods captured Londi's heart from its inception. Guy Songy, her business partner with 30 years experience in the construction business, shared her enthusiasm for the project! The idea of a subdivision where lots were not clear-cut and care taken to protect the landscape, appealed to Guy's sense of right and his life-time appreciation for forests and wildlife.  width=
Ron, Londi, and Guy

Everyone came on board with the concept! In 2004, Chateau Nouveau started developing Old Mandeville Woods which is located between Labarre and Preval Streets and adjacent and west of Soult Street. St. Tammany Parish did not have the regulations to enforce the wildlife easements; however, the City of Mandeville did and the property was annexed into the City. The old "Jackson Lane" lots of record and "undeveloped" street right-of-ways were revoked within this 20 acres which was then subdivided into 36 lots of 90 by 226 ft with forested areas preserved as wildlife easements along the lot perimeters. An 80 foot wide right-of-way was dedicated down the center of the property: to contain utility easements, a roadway (Old Mandeville Lane), swales for drainage, and a 20 foot nature area to contain a 2 to 3 foot-wide walking path.

The City of Mandeville agreed to enforce the wildlife easements and to provide for street maintenance and garbage pickup once the subdivision was built to their standards. If wildlife easement areas are damaged during construction, the city will not issue an occupancy permit until they are restored. This eliminated the need for a homeowners' association and makes it harder for future homeowners to tamper with the concept of the wildlife easements. Sewage and water are provided through NEES (Northshore Environmental Engineering Services).

Old Mandeville Woods Subdivision Plat

Kevin Lilly of Showcase Properties (ShowcaseProp.com) is the real estate agent in 2012 for the following 4 lots: 5B, 8A, 12B and 14B. Please contact him if you are interested in purchasing one of these lots. Kevin can be reached at 985-869-8690 or by email at kevinlilly@showcaseprop.com.

Lot 1B Natural Setting
The Designer Woods concept involves opening the forest by trimming off lower tree branches, thinning the undergrowth, mulching the ground, adding new plants, and letting the trees, shrubs, and flowers form a natural setting for each home within a lot. Ron agreed to supervise the hand clearing and initial landscaping for the wildlife easements on Chateau Nouveau building sites to apply different concepts in enhancing the natural beauty of the forest.

The wildlife easements cover the perimeter of each lot, occupying more than 55% of the area, leaving the central portion available for a house-building site, a lawn, and a pool. Fences (open - not solid - unless around a pool) are limited to this center portion to allow movement of deer through the wildlife corridors on the perimeters. Old Mandeville Lane runs down the center of the subdivision with a nature walk paralleling the east side of the roadway. Drivers and walkers see the houses blending within the "cool" forest.

Deer crossing Old Mandeville Lane in July, 2005.
Photo taken at 400 feet.

On August 29, 2005, Category 4 Hurricane Katrina rode through the area with the eye passing over the Louisiana-Mississippi border 25 miles to the east. Mandeville was in the western eyewall, the "good" side of a Gulf Coast hurricane. Although flooding was extensive along the Lake Pontchartrain lakefront in Mandeville and tremendous tree damage occurred throughout St. Tammany Parish; no flooding occurred in the subdivision and only a few trees fell in Old Mandeville Woods, without doing any damage to any houses. Our little nature preserve was protected.

The remaining 12+ acres of woods owned by Ron Stoessell are two adjacent squares: 294 to the west and 311 to the north of the subdivision. At present these two squares are being maintained as a continuous wildlife preserve and buffer to adjacent subdivisions. An artesian well is planned to be drilled (to the Big Branch Aquifer) in Square 294 to serve as a water source for wildlife.

As of 2007, the City of Mandeville has taken over street maintenance in Old Mandeville Woods. The Designer Woods concept in the wildlife easements has been left to the individual homeowners as long as they do not put in a lawn in these areas. Some have created a beautiful Sherwood Forest look and others have left it totally natural, leaving it overgrown, or eliminated most of the vegetation, leaving it barren. We have learned that homeowners have to invest time and effort into making beautiful woods.

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