The workaround works great. Thanks.

Also thanks for creating the Visual D ticket- I didn't have a lot of time to do research on this so it's very appreciated.

Another tweak I've found with the project generation is by default *.json files are set to be cleaned up in the main project. This ens up deleting the packages.json file when the project is cleaned or rebuilt. You can easily remove it from the cleanup list in the project settings, but if dub has any say in how that project gets generated it might be nice thing to leave out by default.