The city has found a few surprises at the Montrose site slated to be a Trader Joe's, but officials say it won't delay the scheduled 2011 opening of the market.
Now a barren patch of dirt across Honolulu Avenue from the Montrose-Crescenta branch library, the site was an auto dealership and service garage for years before the city acquired it in 2002.
City engineers knew there were contaminants in the soil related to the industrial uses, but in recent months they have identified one more patch of tainted soil, as well as a few structures.
Emil Tatevosian, the city's deputy director of redevelopment, said the walls found in the soil appear to be part of the old auto service operation beneath street level.
"Nothing dramatic," he said. "No houses. No dead bodies."
The structures were discovered as crews were cleaning the soil, including some foundation systems left behind from when the dealership was demolished, Tatevosian added.