The Kern County Board of Supervisors has unanimously approved a massive master planned residential and commercial project proposed at the southern end of the San Joaquin Valley.

The 5-0 vote on Tuesday allows the developer, Tejon Ranch Co., to seek a number of permits from regional, state and federal agencies, and it allows the company to begin the engineering work needed prior to construction.

The Grapevine at Tejon Ranch project will include 12,000 residential units and 5.1 million square feet of commercial space. It is to be comprised of six villages, each with its own school, separated by open space.

The community will be along both sides of Interstate 5 adjacent to the Tejon Ranch Commerce Center and a related outlet mall. It is expected to take about 20 years to build out. The site is in southern Kern County, not far from the Los Angeles County border.

Tejon Ranch Co. Chief Executive Gregory S. Bielli said the project will serve as a catalyst for further economic development and job creation in the region.

“By securing approval of these entitlements for Grapevine, Tejon Ranch Co. is taking an important step forward in unlocking the asset value of Tejon Ranch,” Bielli said in a prepared statement.