For this week’s Face of Northeast, we spoke to Shawn Arcidino, owner of Atomic Collision Body Shop, located at 2712 E. Truman Rd. While Arcidino currently lives in the Lake City area with his teenage son, he’s fascinated by the historic buildings around Historic Northeast.
“I’ve always been interested in the historic spots in Kansas City, the buildings, architecture, history,” Arcidino said. “I was just driving down Truman Road and saw this building, and could picture its potential.”
So, he purchased the building in 2017 and had his business up and running in the spring of 2018. He had artist Steven R. Bohall paint a portrait of Harry Truman on the highly-visible east side of the building and named his shop Atomic Collision, due to the fact that Truman ordered the dropping of atomic bombs during World War II.
“But some people don’t get the connection,” he admits.
Another fun exterior decoration is on the roof, an art piece that looks like an atomic bomb has hit the roof, which was crafted from the tail section of a vintage plane.
The cavernous space gives him plenty of room to repair and restore vehicles, from removing dents and other collision damage to customizing vintage cars. It also allows him room to store his expanding collection of signs, vending machines, and other vintage items that catch his eye.
“I’ve always been a packrat, just attracted to older stuff, signs and advertising,” he explained.
Currently, Arcidino is working to recreate a 23-foot-tall fiberglass “muffler man” like those that were placed outside service stations and repair shops back in the 1960’s. Once complete, he hopes to install it on the roof of his building as a landmark visible from a good distance and a fun addition to the community.