Written by Clay Chandler


Jan. 21, 2014 |


The Town of Livingston soon will get well.


The rural Madison County retail and residential center's expansion will be among the first "well-certified" projects in the world, said Paul Scialla, founder of New York-based real estate firm Delos Living, which specializes in well-certification.


What that means is the commercial portion of Livingston scheduled to open this spring will have things like Posturepedic flooring, water purification systems, showers enriched with Vitamin C, sound-dampening interiors, windows that block the sun's UV rays and lighting meant to increase energy and decrease mental clutter.


"There's so much focus on green building standards," Scialla said Tuesday at the site at the intersection of Mississippi 463 and Mississippi 22. "We thought we could push that farther."


Delos Living has been involved with individual buildings that have been certified in New York and Los Angeles, Scialla said. The $73 million Town of Livingston will be the first full-scale development to earn the certification.


David Landrum, who developed Livingston's existing farmers' market, said construction started about five months ago on the expansion. The concept dates to 2007 but languished as zoning ordinances were changed and the national recession hit.


The 44-acre town square will include a mercantile store, a restaurant, men's barbershop and an office building built in the same style as the 1880s, when Livingston served as Madison County's first county seat, Landrum said. The restaurant -named "The County Seat" -will honor that heritage. The square should be open by May, Landrum said.


Forty-four Charleston-style cottages, priced in the $400,000 range at 2,300-2,900 square feet, are planned. A 400-acre subdivision called Chestnut Hill featuring larger homes will sit adjacent to the square. Individual owners can have their homes well-certified. Walkability will be a primary component of all of it, Landrum said.


"That's such a popular thing now, for people to be able to either walk or ride in a golf cart in their neighborhood to go get a cup of coffee," he said. The development's second phase will include an event facility and a wedding chapel, Landrum said.


The old Livingston dried up in the late 1800s when Madison County's first railroads bypassed it, taking with them the town's residents and the businesses and homes they supported. It's mostly been made up of open land since, buttressed by a few well-appointed cattle farms.


Landrum, whose personal home sits in Chestnut Hill, bought the property in 2007, intent on turning the new Livingston into a shrine to its past. Livingston's farmers market, open since 2012, has become a staple for summertime entertainment. Country music star Travis Tritt headlined a show there last May.


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