Driving the growth, of course, is the overall economy and general consumer optimism. On the flip side of this, the low unemployment has challenged restaurateurs with finding qualified workers for both the front of the house and the kitchen.
Even though openings are far outpacing closings and restaurants are opening in seemingly every new building, there are a few large, high-profile vacancies out there. Take the former Garces Trading Company at 1111 Locust St., which closed in July amid the Garces bankruptcy. Or 1600 Market St., which hasn't housed a restaurant before.