I would like to imagine an isolated town. In my mind the town has large buildings, but has a small geographical footprint. I'd like the town to be isolated in the sense that to reach it from other 'nearby' towns, it takes a relatively long time by ground, and perhaps even by air. Do such places exist? Can such places exist, or has our mastery of transportation made reaching even the farthest human settlements on earth a trivial thing? If such a place already exists, where is it, and why is it so isolated?
Oh yes. They certainly exist.
There are some towns like that "somewhat south" of where I live.
You've probably heard of them :-).
The furthest away is called "South Pole".
A some what closer one is called "Mcmurdo".
Not too far from Mcmurdo as the Snowcat runs is a town named "Scott Base".
THe following gives enough of a feel for the match to the aspects that you mention. If at 1st glance your building description does not seem to fit, have a look at the start of the National Geographic "Megastructures" video.
Commuting between South Pole to Mcmurdo by air is either
'Impossible' means either that you could not sanely get an aircraft off the "ground" or that, if you'd done so, it would probably be the last bad decision you ever made.
For freight, going by "road" is much more reliable and economical than by air, even though the average road speed is under 50 miles per day. 'Rather specialised ' convoys make the trip regularly. For some reason they call it the South Pole Traverse. It's about 1000 miles each way - although another 1000 may end up happening. A round trip takes typically 40 or 50 days.
Pictures from here - 'South Pole Traverse'.
Not at Mcmurdo per se but at a remote field base which they flew to from Mcmurdo, on one occasion they crashed three C-130 Hercules aircraft (small-airliner size freight carriers) aircraft in a row before giving up and leaving them until a later date to attempt recovery. XD-07 aka Betty Boop was recovered 5 years later.
Interesting account of the events here
From either town to "civilisation" (which is Christchurch in New Zealand) is about 2000 miles - the normal means of access is by air as the alternative sea + "land" route is an adventure in its own right.
Flying Christchurch to South Pole - 34 minute video
Megastructures - New South Pole station 1 hour video - National Geographic. Hyped narrative but interesting
A C130 that survived the triple grounding
South o]Pole station- older history here
Coach class - Christchurch to Mcmurdo to South Pole by air.
All change at McMurdo.
Top row - Christchurch to Mcmurdo.
Bottom - Mcmurdo to South Pole.
From here - excellent 'photos essay'. .
Antarctica - Excellent resource