This paper analyzes recent socio-spatial changes in cities adjacent to European Union internal borders. The idea is to show how mutations in the functioning of territorial nation-states in the conditions of post-1989 transformations, European integration, and, more broadly, economic globalization, are reworked by trans-border municipal cooperation. All these macro changes are unpacked from the angle of the growth of the importance of the urban scale in comparison to the national scale and the more active role of cities as units in changing scalar hierarchies. More specifically our focus here is on the strategies of placepromotion of the German-Polish border city Goerlitz-Zgorzelec in the context of planning hallmark events (here, European Capital of Culture 2010). This article argues that closeness to a political border is utilized by Goerlitz-Zgorzelec within various strategies for gaining place-specific competitive advantage by means of an active politics of scale.