Outdoor dining is as hot as ever this summer. rd+d readers were surveyed on where they’ve seen the biggest investments in outdoor dining. Weatherproofing was the top response with 39% of respondents. This included both fans and heaters, depending on the region.

However, furniture and decor upgrades intended to increase comfort and extend the brand experience were a very close second with 38% of readers saying that was where they’d seen the greatest operator investment in 2022.

Landscaping elements like planters and greenery were where 9% of readers surveyed saw the greatest operator investment in 2022. 8% said structural elements like tents and gates were the greatest area of investment this year.

The rest noted that they haven’t joined the outdoor dining craze due to space or operational constraints.

rd+d’s ongoing research project periodically surveys qualified subscribers on the state of restaurant development and design. This survey was fielded in June 2022.