Simone le Grange graduated from the School of Architecture at UCT in 1996 with Distinction. After working in practice for 5 years she was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to study in the US. She completed her Masters of Urban Design at the University of California, Berkeley, in 2004.
As a practicing Architect and Urban Designer her interests have always been in the making of buildings and spaces in poorer communities within the Western Cape. While in practice she has worked on schools, clinics and community centres, as well as some more well known buildings such as the Nelson Mandela Gateway to Robben Island. She has also been involved with Urban Design work, particularly related to the redevelopment of District Six.
She taught part-time at the then Peninsula Technikon, for two years (1998-2000). She has also taught part-time at UCT, teaching design in the 2nd year studio in 2005 and 2006. As a student at UC Berkeley, she worked as a research assistant to Professor Bosselmann, on a comprehensive study of the Urban Design of San Francisco. In February 2008, she joined UCT as a full-time Lecturer, in the position of Academic Development Lecturer for the School of Architecture.
Her research interests are two-fold. As a practicing Architect she is interested in the ongoing development of appropriate ways of building community and dignity within the Post-Apartheid city through the provision of well designed and cost effective public buildings and public spaces. As a teacher of Architecture, she is interested in the dilemma that is particular to South African students, who come from presently and previously disadvantaged backgrounds, and the opportunities for transformation within the School of Architecture that this presents.
As part of this process she runs the annual Schools workshop to raise awareness of the disciplines of Architecture within poorer communities, and to recruit applicants who would otherwise not have applied. She also runs the Winter Studio every year, which provides opportunities for added growth and development for some students.