Saint John — Saint John has a new owner and it isn’t the Queen of England.
Earlier this week Don Darling, now former mayor, announced the sale of the entire city to property development company Historica.
“We were looking for a new city manager,” explained Darling. “Then we thought instead of new management, why not new ownership? What works for a struggling restaurant just might work for this city’s financial issues.”
Hisotrica president Keith Brideau is not daunted by the financial position of Saint John.
“We have exciting plans for the city,” said Brideau. “Saint John doesn’t have a fiscal problem. It has a brand problem. To resolve that, we will be rebranding our neighbourhoods. Uptown will be renamed SoKi [for South of King], the south end and lower west side are now the lower east-west side, and Waterloo Village is now just The Village. Pretty cool, eh?”
Not all Saint Johners share Brideau’s excitement.
“This sale is unlawful,” said Jordan Paul. “I’m Wolastokuk. This is our land. You can’t sell what you don’t own.” Asked what Wolastokuk is, Paul replied, “Are you kidding me? Does anyone know Canadian history?” We don’t.
“This is just the beginning,” said Brideau. “We are also considering a new name for the city itself. Later today, we’ll be launching an extensive public consultation process to determine the best name.”
Hours later, Historica posted a Facebook poll asking: “Saint Keith’s? Great new name for Saint John or greatest new name for Saint John?”