A few things i found very interesting about the article you linked to:
1. As you noted, that cost of BRT vs. LRT is very surprising. Calgary was originally planning their 46 km Green Line to be a BRT first at a cost of $1.5 billion versus $5B for just a section of LRT they are doing now. And our line is 14km and it was going to cost $1.7Billion vs $2.2B for LRT? That's a mighty expensive BRT line our city planners we're estimating and more than 3x the cost of the Calgary project per km.
2. I hope we meet out projected ridership of 40,100 trips per day on day one of the line opening (that's 14.6 million trips per year), but I'm kinda thinking that number is bogus - especially given the fact that instead of adding 2.5 million trips per year when the $665M line to NAIT opened, we actually lost 3 million trips per year system wide (a swing of 5.5 millon to the negative). That's a significant misprojection - and that was pre pandemic. And that must have hurt revenues to some degree and currently we have a bus network with new deficiencies compared to previously.
3. At the end of that article, it was surprising to read one of council's pro lrt voices, Andrew Knack, was actually open to the idea of 'slowing down' the west LRT project given some council members were concerned about the price tag.
From the article you posted:
"If cost is the issue, Knack said he’d rather slow down and see what emerging technologies like trackless trains can offer. Slowing down is fine.
“The wrong approach is to do a half measure,” he said.
I strongly suspect that the West LRT will be slowed down to the point of stopping work on it for now to re-evaluate. As you said, even Andrew Knack is now hesitating. I think Covid changed everything.