Nearly half of all rd+d readers (42.78%) said that improving and expanding off-premises dining across most segments will continue to trend post-pandemic. That data point comes from a survey of qualified subscribers conducted in December.

And, despite the winter weather, 34.02% of readers participating in the survey also believe dining al fresco will continue to be popular and in-demand in 2021. Additionally, 14.43% of respondents predict that to-go alcohol sales will be normalized in states where it wasn’t before and that, going forward, bar design will need to reflect that new reality.

Other trends identified by participating restaurant design and development professionals include an expansion of restaurant business into the retail and grocery segments, brick-and-mortar locations moving to food truck formats and most operators reducing menu size. At least one person, though, believes “none of the above” will continue to trend because their “clients will go back to pre-COVID designs.”

rd+d launched a yearlong research project that will periodically survey qualified subscribers on the state of restaurant development and design. Each issue in 2021 will feature new data collected from very recent reader surveys.