Our Company | RW Collins Co.

Our Company


We are a third-generation, family-owned, and Illinois-based environmental and excavation contractor certified as a Women-Owned Business by the State of Illinois, Indiana, and the City of Chicago.


Robert W. Collins founded RW Collins Co. in 1946 amid the growing need for underground tank installations in Chicago’s rapidly expanding neighborhoods and suburbs. We have grown over the years to provide a much wider array of services.

The entrepreneurial spirit and deep care exhibited by R.W. are the foundation of our culture today. We believe in getting the job done right, safely, and on time. We are proud to be the Midwest’s leading environmental contractor for soil remediation and excavation services, with one of the most versatile and capable equipment fleets in the industry.




U.S. Navy Seabee in WWII, Robert W. “Bob” Collins constructed bridges and cleared jungle land for roads and runways in Okinawa and the Pacific.



Following his service as a U.S. Navy Seabee, Bob Collins began his career as an excavating contractor in Chicago.

1950s - 1960s

1950s – 1960s

With the rush to build new gas stations, RW Collins establishes itself as an underground tank contractor. Our signature machine of this era was the Bucyrus Erie 15-B cable backhoe (A restored antique is now displayed outside of our offices!).



1970s Bucryrus Erie

The company moved to our current office and shop location, and the second generation of the family joined the business.

1980s - 1990s

1980s – 1990s

1990s tank installation

With the rapid growth of environmental awareness and regulation, tank removals and contaminated soil cleanups surge.

2000s - 2010s

2000s – 2010s

MGP Site Remediation

Major long-term projects, particularly MGP sites, become our dominant market segment.

2010 - Present

2010 – 2020s


RW Collins expands to the wider Midwest region; The third generation of the family enters the company.

RW Collins Co. is the Midwest’s leading contractor for clients in need of quality site preparation and remediation work. We assist commercial and residential property owners with excavation, environmental, soil remediation, and underground tank removal services.

  • Clients include: engineering firms, real estate developers, oil & gas companies, utilities, construction firms, municipalities, and government agencies
  • Projects completed in multiple states including Arkanasa, Missouri, Wisconsin, and Ohio
  • Over 75 years of experience in excavation and construction services
  • Extensive modern equipment fleet for a wide range of services
  • Industry-leading reputation for safety program and personnel expertise

Case Studies

  • environmental remediation case study

    Environmental Remediation – Chicago (Pilsen)

  • Excavation Services

    Excavation Site – Chicago (Harvest Homes)